Conservatives' debate

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Opposition parties accused the government of "breaking promises" with cancer waiting time targets.

The Conservatives were leading a debate on treatment waiting times in the NHS, on 18 June 2014.

The Welsh government's target for patients newly diagnosed via the 'Urgent Suspected Cancer route' to start definitive treatment within the target time of 62 days, is 95%.

According to Conservative Health Spokesperson Darren Millar this target has not been met since 2008.

Despite commitments from First Minister Carwyn Jones, Mr Millar accused the government of failing to hit specific targets in March 2013 and in October 2013.

Darren Millar called the cancer waiting times a "disgrace" and said that the first minister had "broken his own promises" and that "communities deserve answers".

Liberal Democrat Leader Kirsty Williams agreed that waiting times were "unacceptable" and called on the government to outline the governments plans into improving waiting times for diagnostic tests.

Plaid Cymru Health Spokesperson Elin Jones said the Welsh government's failure to hit this target "is extremely worrying".

Ms Jones called on the health minister to focus his effort on "hitting existing targets", instead of "drawing up new cancer targets".

Health Minister Mark Drakeford called the Conservatives' debate "partial, selective, unfocused and unfair" and stressed that the waiting times for treatment in England was "the size of Wales".

However Mr Drakeford admitted patients were waiting "too long" for treatment and diagnostic tests in Wales, and was prepared to learn from other establishments, such as Scotland who had recently improved their waiting times.

He said there were "huge opportunities" to drive out wasteful diagnostic tests and to prioritise those in urgent need of treatment.

Darllenwch hwn yn Gymraeg

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