HC Deb 22 July 1980 vol 989 c614W
34. Mr. Farr

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what further steps he is taking to reduce the waiting time for National Health Service operations and consultations.

Dr. Vaughan

Although I am concerned at the length of time some people are having to wait for hospital treatment, I do not believe that direct action by central Government would be appropriate. In general, it is for each health authority to determine what action to reduce waiting lists is practicable and what[...]rity such action should be given within available resources. However, the Department's working party on orthopaedic waiting time will be reporting shortly, and I hope its findings will be of value to authorities seeking to reduce waiting times. An increase in the number of operations carried out in the private sector may contribute to a reduction in waiting times for some types of admission to NHS hospitals.