Western Trust hospitals and consultants were responsible for 6,229 cancelled outpatient appointments between July and September last year, the Sentinel can reveal.
Patients were responsible for just a hundred more (6,329) cancelled outpatient appointments during the same three month period.
A detailed breakdown giving details of the ‘reasons for cancellation’ has been newly-collated by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (DHSSPS).
It shows there were 12,765 cancellations across the Western Trust during the second quarter of the current financial year.
However, culpability for cancellations is shared almost exactly equally between the system and the patients.
In July 2,205 cancellations were outside patients’ control. And of these 2,205 cancellations, consultant unavailability was the number one cause (552). During the same month, 2,056 patients cancelled.
In August there were 4,015 cancellations.
Two thousand of these were due to consultants or hospital administrators and 2,015 were due to patients. And in September there were 4,480 cancellations: 2,024 outside patients’ control; 2,258 within patients’ control.
Surprisingly, five appointments were cancelled in July because an ambulance wasn’t available. There were also cancellations in August (one cancelled appointment) and September (one cancelled appointment) for the same reason.
Edwin Poots has a placed a breakdown of the figures in the Assembly Library.