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NHS cancer waiting times

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  • Release date: 15 March 2017
  • Period covered: Quarter ending December 2016 and month ending January 2017
  • Next update: 20 April 2017
Monthly statistics on patients who have been newly diagnosed with cancer and started definitive treatment.

Changes to how we publish

To achieve more coherence, from April we are planning to start to publish all of our monthly NHS activity statistics on a single day each month. All of the existing data will still be available monthly through StatsWales and we will produce an overarching commentary. To allow you to explore the data better and to see it in one place, we will also be making available an online tool. Please see the Chief Statistician’s update (external link) for more information.

Month ending January 2017

Release date: 15 March 2017

Chart showing the percentage of patients treating within the target times via the urgent and non-urgent suspected cancer routes, April 2012 onwards. The chart an overall decline since October 2013, which was the peak month for both targets.

Key points

  • 87.0 per cent of patients (594 out of 683) newly diagnosed with cancer via the Urgent Suspected Cancer route started definitive treatment within the target time of 62 days. 
  • 96.8 per cent of patients (816 out of 843) who were newly diagnosed with cancer not via the Urgent route started definitive treatment within the target time of 31 days. 
  • 2 of the 6 Local Health Boards (LHBs) met the target that at least 98 per cent of patients newly diagnosed with cancer not via the Urgent route should start definitive treatment within 31 days. None of the LHBs met the target that at least 95 per cent of patients newly diagnosed with cancer via the Urgent route should start definitive treatment within 62 days.

All figures relating to January 2017 are provisional. Note that there are small numbers in the monthly statistics; therefore care should be taken when interpreting percentages.

Key points quarter ending December 2016

Release date: 15 February 2017

  • 86.1 per cent of patients (1,561 out of 1,813) newly diagnosed with cancer via the urgent suspected cancer route started definitive treatment within the target time of 62 days. Between the quarters ending September 2008 and March 2011, this percentage was around the low to mid 90s. It has since been below 90 per cent every quarter, apart from the quarters ending December 2011 and December 2013.
  • 97.1 (2,320 out of 2,390) per cent of patients who were newly diagnosed with cancer not via the urgent route started definitive treatment within the target time of 31 days. The long term trend has been fairly static, fluctuating around 98 and 99 per cent from quarter ending September 2007 to quarter ending December 2012 and generally meeting the target. Since then it has been between 96 per cent and 99 per cent each quarter. It was last above 98 per cent in the quarter ending June 2014.
  • At local health board (LHB) level, three of the six LHBs met the target that at least 98 per cent of patients newly diagnosed with cancer not via the urgent route should start definitive treatment within 31 days. None of the LHBs met the target that at least 95 per cent of patients newly diagnosed with cancer via the urgent route should start definitive treatment within 62 days.

Note

A quality report is available that has information about the methodology, how the data (monthly and quarterly) is released, definitions, information on disclosure and details on how revisions to the data are handled.

Contact

Statistician
Tel: 0300 025 3642
Email: stats.healthinfo@wales.gsi.gov.uk

Media
Tel: 0300 025 8099

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