OVER 9,200 outpatient appointments were wasted in the Western Health and Social Care Trust (Western Trust) last year due to patients/clients not turning up for their appointment, costing the Trust £1.5million, it has been revealed.
According to the shock statistics just released by the Western Trust, from January 1 to December 31, 2019, the total number of patients who did not attend their outpatient appointment or failed to give staff sufficient notice to make the appointments available to other patients, in hospitals across the Western Trust area was 9,260.
Omagh GP and councillor, Josephine Deehan, described the situation as “unsustainable”.
Each missed appointment costs the Trust £170, which equates to £1.5millon lost to the health and social care budget in 2019.
Broken down, the figures show that the majority of missed appointments were at Altnagelvin Hospital (7,334) followed by the South West Acute Hospital (1,387).
In Omagh Hospital and Primary Care Complex there were 959 missed appointments and 415 in Limavady's Roe Valley facility.
Geraldine McKay, director of Acute Hospitals for the Western Trust, said missed slots are having a significant impact on a health service that is already struggling.