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Patients to wait over 70 weeks for an operation

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have revealed that patients waiting for orthopaedic surgery at the Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend can expect to wait over 70 weeks until surgery.

Kirsty Williams, leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, wrote to the health board after a constituent had been told in May 2014 the waiting list for knee surgery was 52 weeks.  However in a letter to Ms Williams, the hospital has now clarified that the average waiting list has been lengthened to 70 weeks due to "winter pressures".

Kirsty Williams AM challenged the First Minister today in the chamber on this issue. Following this exchange, Peter Black, Welsh Lib Dem AM for South Wales West said:

"Under Labour in Wales, waiting lists are spiralling out of control.

"It’s simply unacceptable that anyone should be forced to wait over 70 weeks for a knee operation, let alone this now being the average wait for people.

"I welcome the fact that Kirsty Williams challenged the First Minister on this. Sadly, his answers were as complacent as ever.

"The Welsh Liberal Democrats’ plans for more nurses, an independent NHS watchdog and better community care would ensure that everyone is treated with respect, dignity and in a timely fashion.  We are a party that is ambitious for Wales."

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