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Heart Bypass Operations

Volume 201: debated on Friday 20 December 1991

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To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people in Northern Ireland are on the national health service waiting lists for heart bypass operations; and what steps he is taking to reduce the period of waiting.

I am advised by the Eastern health and social services hoard that at 30 November 1991 there were 758 people in Northern Ireland waiting for heart bypass operations.The recent completion of the.£1·5 million extension to the cardiac recovery area at the Royal Victoria hospital will permit an increase in the number of operations and I understand that the RVH has advertised for additional staff to support the extra workload. In addition health and social services boards are actively considering purchasing further operations from outside Northern Ireland. The Western board has already taken an initiative this year in arranging to buy additional cardiac operations for its resident population from hospitals in London.