WAITING times at Cardiff and Vale hospitals have been called "dangerous and totally unacceptable", after it was revealed that hundreds of patients wait for hours to be transferred from ambulances and into hospital.

The Welsh Government's target time for someone to be transferred is 15 minutes.

Figures show that at the University Hospital of Wales last year 29 patients waited for more than four hours and 569 people waited for more than two hours.

Vale resident and Assembly Member Andrew RT Davies criticised the "dangerous” waiting times.

He said: "For hundreds of patients to be left waiting in ambulances for hours when in need of emergency care is dangerous and totally unacceptable.

“The Welsh Government’s target handover time is just 15 minutes, reflecting the urgent need to get emergency patients treated as soon as possible.

“It is little wonder that ambulance response times in the Vale are so poor when ambulances are being tied up at hospitals with patients they are unable to transfer.

“Labour’s record breaking cuts to the Welsh NHS have led to bed numbers being cut by a fifth in Wales, leaving A&E units full to capacity. If an ambulance crew cannot release a patient then they will not be able to attend other emergency calls.

“It is a vicious circle and Vale patients deserve better.”