MONCTON, N.B. -- The New Brunswick government says it is spending $3 million in a bid to reduce wait times for people having orthopedic surgery in Moncton.

In making the announcement, Premier Brian Gallant said hip and knee joint replacements constitute the greatest waits for orthopedic surgeries.

He says it could also prevent added health-care costs by ensuring more timely surgeries.

Gallant says referrals for such surgeries have been on the rise because of an aging population, making it difficult to ensure reasonable wait times.

The money will be used to increase surgical capacity at the Moncton Hospital and Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont University Hospital Centre.

The province says it will also be used to develop a more co-ordinated approach for consultations with specialists.