Written Answers. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Jack Wall

Ceist:

312 Mr. Wall asked the Minister for Health and Children the position regarding an application by a person (details supplied) in County Carlow for an appointment at the rheumatology out-patients' clinic at Waterford Regional Hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27619/01]

Jack Wall

Ceist:

313 Mr. Wall asked the Minister for Health and Children his plans to reduce the waiting list for patients wishing to be seen at the rheumatology out-patients' clinic at Waterford Regional Hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27620/01]

I propose to take Questions Nos. 312 and 313 together.

As the Deputy will be aware, the South-Eastern Health Board is responsible for the provision of services at Waterford Regional Hospital. The board has identified as a priority development the appointment of a second consultant rheumatologist at Waterford Regional Hospital and I am pleased to advise the Deputy that I have recently given financial approval to the board for that appointment. The board is confident this appointment will impact favourably on those patients currently on the waiting list for rheumatology treatment at the hospital.

In relation to the person referred to in the Deputy's question, my Department has asked the chief executive officer of the board to look into this matter and reply directly to the Deputy as a matter of urgency.