BHF Cymru has issued the following statement in response to the latest NHS Wales performance data.
Hospital waiting lists for potentially life saving vital heart care continue to rise each month, according to latest NHS Wales figures published today.
The latest statistics reveal that over 23,665 people were waiting for heart surgery or treatment, including invasive heart procedures, at the end of June in Wales – the highest number on record.
The number of patients waiting over six months decreased to 6,220 in June and is down from a peak of 8,433 last September.
Despite some progress, over a quarter of patients (26%) had been waiting longer than six months for their treatment.
This is more than three times as many patients as were waiting this long before the pandemic, when 1,763 patients were waiting.
In addition, there are record numbers of patients in Wales waiting for diagnostic services, including over 13,000 people waiting for echocardiograms.
Adam Fletcher, Head of BHF Cymru said:
“Despite the NHS in Wales and its staff pulling out all the stops, we are still seeing ever-increasing cardiac waiting lists – even for heart surgery, which is not a luxury that people can live without.
“Delaying cardiovascular care can lead to disabling heart failure or even cost lives.
“There are some encouraging signs that waiting times are improving, but the long-term picture is obviously deeply concerning. We need Welsh Government to implement the quality statement for heart conditions to prevent more lives being lost to treatable heart conditions.”