“Heads would roll” in England if hospital waiting list figures were on the same scale as those currently seen in Northern Ireland.
Nigel Edwards, the chief executive of the Nuffield Trust health body, described the figures as “serious” and said:
These figures represent a very worrying situation in Northern Ireland.
[They] compare very badly with the figures in England, where, if we saw this level of waiting, action would be taken.
In fact, I suspect we would find chief executives being removed and urgent action being taken to bring in additional capacity to try and get the numbers down. Heads would probably roll in some cases for this level of waiting in some of England’s hospitals.
The BBC revealed in July that some patients were waiting up to 18 months for hospital appointments.
Despite this. a debate on the matter at Stormont was sparsely attended largely due to the absence of a Health Minister and the DUP’s in-out ministerial strategy which has backfired spectacularly.