The waiting list for hospital based gynaecological services had reached just under half a million patients in April 2022, almost double the pre-pandemic figure observed in April 2019 (279,400 patients waiting). Over the same period the median waiting time for gynaecological services doubled from 6.9 weeks to 13.7 weeks. (Source: NHS England, Consultant-led Referral to Treatment Waiting Times Data).

In December 2021, the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) published its policy paper, Our vision for the Women’s Health Strategy in England, which reports on the findings of the consultation. The Department also published an analytical report of the survey findings, Results of the ‘Women’s Health – Let’s talk about it’ survey.

The DHSC policy paper outlines priority areas relating to specific conditions or areas of health, including menstrual health and gynaecological conditions.

Section 2 of Our vision for the Women’s Health Strategy in England sets out the Government’s ambition for women’s health, and section 9 sets out the next steps for the Strategy. The Government has said it plans to publish the Women’s Health Strategy later this year.

In June 2022, the Government appointed Dame Lesley Regan as the first Women’s Health Ambassador for England [see Written Ministerial Statement, HCWS114, Statement on Women’s Health Ambassador, 20 June 2022].

NHS waiting time targets are set out in the Handbook to the NHS Constitution for England.

As health is a devolved matter this information relates to gynaecological services in England.

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