Tories: Labour cannot be trusted with NHS

Tories point to figures showing Welsh patients are typically waiting more than twice as long for orthopaedic procedures – such as hip, knee, shoulder replacements.

The average wait for trauma and orthopaedic services is 15.1 weeks in England but 32.4 weeks in Wales.

The analysis comes on the heels of figures showing that over two years there was a nearly 40 per cent increase in Welsh patients seeking care in England.

A Conservative source said: “Labour’s abysmal record running the NHS in Wales shows why they can’t be trusted with the NHS in England. Under Labour people are made to wait up to twice as long for common treatments, so it is no surprise increasing numbers of Welsh people have been seeking care under the Conservatives in England.

“The Health Secretary in England has already eliminated the longest waits and is continuing to work to cut waiting lists and get care to people even faster.”

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A Welsh Government spokeswoman shot back: “Long waiting times are falling every month in Wales and have more than halved in the past year.

“People living in Wales have always been treated in England, just as people living in England have always been treated in Wales. An increasing number of people from England are being treated in Wales: in 2020-21 there was a 55% increase in the number of English residents treated in Wales.

“In January 2023 there were 60% more English residents registered with GPs in Wales. Wales has also outperformed England in major emergency department four-hour performance in nine out of the last eleven months.”

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Financial challenges facing the NHS in Wales have also come under the spotlight with a BBC analysis last week finding overspending may hit more than £800million by the spring.

Welsh Secretary David Davies said: “Under the UK Conservative Government, the Labour-run Welsh Government is receiving the largest funding settlement in the history of devolution… I urge Labour to finally spend the money in key areas, especially in helping our NHS, to improve people’s lives.”

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