My honourable friend the Minister of State, Department of Health (Andy Burnham) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.
The Government are committed to ensuring that by 2008 no one will wait for more than 18 weeks from GP referral to hospital treatment. Reducing waiting times for diagnostics is central to delivering the 18-week pathway. The first step in eliminating diagnostic waits is to be able to measure them.
The following statistics are released today by the Department of Health:
NHS diagnostic waiting times: month ending 30 April 2006
NHS diagnostic waiting times: months ending 31 January, 28 February and 31 March 2006
NHS diagnostic waiting times: biannual census of diagnostic tests, end February 2006.
This first publication of diagnostic waiting times figures will become a regular monthly release. This information can be found on the department's website at www.performance.doh.gov.uk/diagnostics/index.htm. Measurement of diagnostic waiting times will enable the NHS and the department to identify bottlenecks in the system and solutions to deliver the 18-week pathway.