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Hospital Waiting Times

Volume 455: debated on Tuesday 16 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people had been waiting more than six months for an NHS operation in Northern Ireland at the latest date for which figures are available. (114514)

Official waiting lists are produced on a quarterly basis. Information on the number of patients waiting more than six months for in-patient treatment in Northern Ireland hospitals is provided in the following table for the quarters ending December 2005, March 2006, June 2006 and September 2006.

Quarter ending

Number of patients waiting six months and over

December 2005


March 2006


June 2006


September 2006



Departmental Information return CH1

There is a ministerial commitment that by March 2007 no one will have to wait more than six months for in-patient or daycase treatment.

Since the end of September 2006 continued progress has been made towards this target and based on provisional performance monitoring information, 2,681 patients were waiting more than six months for in-patient treatment at the end of December 2006—a reduction of approximately 29 per cent. on the position at the end of September 2006.

Official waiting list figures for in-patient/daycase admission for quarter ending December 2006 will be published on 1 March 2007 and will be available at:

A copy of the next waiting list bulletin will be available in the House of Commons Library.