The gap between demand for care and health service capacity remains unacceptably wide.
As a result, far too many people are waiting too long for hospital appointments, diagnostic tests and treatments.
The latest statistics show that, as a result of the hard work of many in the Health and Social Care system and extra investment in the Waiting List Initiative, the waiting lists have stabilised and in some areas reduced by modest amounts.
A total of £92m has been allocated this year to Waiting List Initiative activity delivering about 330,000 assessments, tests and procedures over the course of 2022/23.
The scale of the challenge means that, even with system improvements, there will be the need for extra investment if waiting times are to be reduced in a reasonable timeframe. The rate of progress will be heavily dependent on whether budgetary settlements for the forthcoming years allow this investment to continue.
Notes to editors:
- The statistical press release can be accessed on the Department of Health website.
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- Quarterly Carers Statistics for Northern Ireland (April – June 2023) 22 September 2023
- Extension to the terms of appointment of two Non-executive Directors to the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service 22 September 2023
- Unused medicines cost Northern Ireland health system £18m per year 20 September 2023
- Department of Health statement 18 September 2023