On Thursday, it was confirmed by the Health Minister, Tony Ryall's office that they received a complaint this week regarding the waiting times at the oncology department of the Wellington hospital. The complaint has been referred to the ministry by Mr. Ryall.
The investigations are being carried out by the Health Ministry into the waiting times experienced by the cancer patients for receiving treatment at the hospital.
Two cases have come to surface of patients meeting death due to the spread of the cancer in their bodies as they were waiting for a first specialist appointment at the hospital, as per the Dominion Post. In the absence of the specifications of the case, a spokesman for Mr. Ryall has declined to comment on the cases.
After oncologist Peter Dady resigned from the hospital in the middle of 2009, the pressure has been increased on cancer services and there has been no replacement of Dr. Dady till now.
Andrew Simpson, Capital & Coast's cancer, medicine and community services Clinical Director stated that there were taken a number of steps to compensate with the Dr. Dady's absence, which included visit of a Nelson Hospital specialist once a week, running evening clinics, hiring a clinical nurse specialist and two junior doctors.
He added that there was not any case of urgent patients waiting for the specialist services and the cases were only of 43 semi-urgent patients who were waiting for their appointment.