The cost of the maintenance backlog facing Wales’ NHS has spiralled to three-quarters of a billion pounds, according to Welsh Conservative research.
Responses to a Freedom of Information requests by the Party to Wales’ seven health boards show that the cost of repair work still to be carried out stands at £748.6m for 2021/22.
That’s up from £571.1m the year before and more than double the figure for 2017/18, which stood at £307.2m.
Commenting, Welsh Conservative Shadow Health Minister Russell George MS said:
“The amount of work that the Labour-run NHS in Wales needs done on it is staggering – and for it to spiral in the last few years has shown a total lack of leadership from ministers in Cardiff Bay.
"With the cost of the maintenance backlog more than doubling to three-quarters of a billion pounds in just five years shows that the Labour Government are not interested in the upkeep of hospitals.
“Without addressing this, there is a risk of patients having treatments and operations cancelled, and by delaying work and allowing the maintenance list to spiral like this, the risk has increased.
“Labour are probably hoping no one will notice their neglect given their hope that people in Wales become so used to having the longest NHS waiting lists and worst A&E waits in Britain that they won’t notice, but the Welsh Conservatives will always highlight how Labour is failing all of us.”
The final cost is likely to be far bigger as Cardiff & Vale health board (HB) said it did not hold the information and Swansea Bay HB failed to respond even after multiple prompts.
The largest backlogs were in Gwent’s Aneurin Bevan and North Wales’ Betsi Cadwaladr HBs, where they had £247.9m and £239.96m worth of works to carry out, respectively.
The figure for West Wales’ Hywel Dda HB was £105.8m, £87.1m in Cwm Taf Morgannwg (which adopted Bridgend properties in April 2019 from the now-Swansea Bay HB), and £67.9m in Powys.
UPDATE: Cardiff & Vale health board have now confirmed its backlog stands at £101,262,019. Swansea Bay health board have also since confirmed its backlog stands at £100m.