Health minister Andy Burnham has announced the appointment of Arthritis Care chief executive Neil Betteridge as the new national patient and public champion.

Mr Betteridge will work with local NHS, key stakeholders and patient groups in an attempt to help deliver the Government's target to reduce waiting times by 2008.

Health minister Andy Burnham has announced the appointment of Arthritis Care chief executive Neil Betteridge as the new national patient and public champion.

Mr Betteridge will work with local NHS, key stakeholders and patient groups in an attempt to help deliver the Government's target to reduce waiting times by 2008.