13th January 2022


Dear Russell,


Waiting times backlog


Thank you for your letter dated 22nd November.  I have drafted this response following discussions with Dr Tracey Cooper and her team at Public Health Wales and colleagues from the NHS Wales Delivery Unit (DU) who undertake national analysis on waiting times data for NHS Wales.


I can confirm that DHCW receive Referral to Treatment Time (RTT) data on a monthly basis from NHS Wales organisations.  This data is submitted to Welsh Government for review, analysis and publication on the StatsWales website.  This site includes figures for the number of people currently waiting for diagnosis or treatment.


The NHS Wales Delivery Unit already produce a dashboard (including modelling) which is broken down by specialty and Health Board. Modelling work has also been undertaken to analyse likely impact of different scenarios, both are available for sharing from the DU.  


You will be aware Health Boards actively monitor their own waiting times and are best placed to advise on measures to manage the backlog.  There are, however, a number of strategic areas of focus for Digital Health & Care Wales which will aid waiting times backlog including:

·         e-advice - now available to GPs to support them to optimise management of clinical conditions and reduce the need to refer some patients

·         the National Data Resource which will bring together all available health and care data facilitating advanced analytics and AI approaches at scale to risk stratify populations

·         the Digital Services for Patients & the Public Programme is now established with development of the platform and processes well underway to provide digital channels for patients to easily interact with health and care services. As modules are developed this will provide patients with the information and access required of a modern health care system, empowering patients and providing far greater options to transform pathways of care.



I hope you find this response helpful, if you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact me.


Yours sincerely,



Helen Thomas

Chief Executive Officer