Ailsa was diagnosed with breast cancer in February 2022 after chasing doctors for a follow-up
A woman with breast cancer has opened up about her experience with NHS waiting timings and a delayed diagnosis.
Ailsa Guard, from Swansea, first discovered a lump in November 2021. The following month she had a scan and was told it could be Covid-related and was "likely nothing to worry about".
Despite waiting for a follow-up, no one made contact and she had to continuously chase for answers.
Ailsa was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer on February 7.
'People are losing their lives because of these waits'
Looking back at her experience, she feels there isn't enough staff to deliver effective cancer care and treatment within NHS Wales.
"Hundreds of women are struggling are being told now that there's a 10 week wait before they can even see the breast clinic with lumps and being sent urgently from their doctors.
"It's just not good enough. People are losing their lives because of these waits - it's as simple as that."
Ailsa added that the constant delays add more stress on top of the diagnosis.
Despite deciding whether to fundraise for private treatments, Ailsa says there is total confusion about how private healthcare and the NHS joins up, with no information on how to navigate it.
It comes as a watchdog, Audit Wales, warns it could take seven years or more for NHS Wales to return waiting lists to pre-pandemic levels.
The findings show there were 700,000 patients waiting for planned care in February 2022, which was double the number waiting in 2020.
In response to to the findings, the Welsh Government have said: "Working with health boards, we have set ambitious but realistic targets to tackle the pandemic backlog for planned care. This is backed by significant extra long-term funding.
"Our recovery plan, published last month, already sets out our plans to address the five recommendations of this report including how we will support patients while they wait and create a sustainable workforce with effective leadership."