Ceredigion’s Welsh Liberal Democrat MP Mark Williams has expressed his concern about the number of people waiting for orthodontic treatment in the Hywel Dda region. This comes as a recent Freedom of Information inquiry has confirmed that the number of young patients waiting for orthodontics in the Hywel Dda region is around 4,000, not the 1,500 figure given in September.
Cuts made to orthodontic services in recent years has meant that orthodontists in the Hywel Dda area state that newly referred patients will need to wait at least three years to be treated. This is the longest wait in Wales; possibly in the UK.
In addition, as the area now being covered by orthodontic practices is so vast, patients can be required to travel for three hours or more to attend each appointment in a course of treatment.
Commenting Mark Williams said:
"I am very concerned by the discrepancy in the figures from Hywel Dda, and will be contacting them to try and ascertain the reason for this.
"Waiting lists for NHS orthodontic treatment in West Wales are very long, and growing. A three year wait for treatment, and then long journeys to receive treatment when you are finally seen is not good enough. More provision must be made."