29 Jun 2011

Wait time for heart surgery at record low

7:20 am on 29 June 2011

The Government is lauding figures that show waiting times for heart surgery are at record lows.

Ministry of Health figures show more heart surgery is being performed, causing waiting times to fall.

They also show shorter waiting times for diagnostic procedures such as angiograms, while regional variations in wait times for surgery have narrowed.

The Heart Foundation says the results are outstanding, with patients waiting six weeks for surgery today compared with six months in 2009.

Health Minister Tony Ryall says initiatives to cull cardiac surgical waiting lists include contracting out surgery to private hospitals, while district health boards with cardiac units are working effectively to better manage surgical schedules.