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Latest Oncology Waiting Times

2 July 2002

The radiation treatment statistics for May show there is little change in waiting times compared with the April figures.

Ministry of Health spokesman Dr Andrew Holmes said as would be expected the radiation treatment statistics show there have been small fluctuations in waiting time figures for each cancer centre. Overall however, there had been little change in the percentage of patients waiting less than six weeks for cancer treatment.

"The Ministry of Health and cancer treatment centres are continuing to work hard to reduce the length of time patients wait for cancer treatment. The situation has improved in recent months to the point where few patients are now being referred to Australia for treatment in order to relieve pressure on the New Zealand system."

Seventy-one percent of patients starting cancer treatment around New Zealand in May waited less than six weeks. This is slightly down on last month's figures which show 72 percent of patients waited less than six weeks, but a considerable improvement on the 58 percent recorded in January this year.

In May, according to the radiation treatment statistics, cancer centres in Auckland, Wellington and Otago recorded drops in the number of patients having to wait more than six weeks for treatment.

During May 632 patients started treatment compared with 659 in April and 592 in March.


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