A&E pressure matches second wave peak

Statistics released by Public Health Scotland show A&E departments under “unsustainable pressure”, as the percentage being seen within the four hour target time dropped to its lowest level since 22 December 2020, in the midst of the second wave.

Newly released figures show that just 81.6% of people attending A&E were seen within four hours. The target set by the Scottish Government is 95%.

This is despite fewer people attending A&E. 26,080 people being seen in the week ending 4 July 2021 compared to 28,588 in the week ending 6 July 2021.

Particular pressure can be seen in South Lanarkshire, where the University Hospital Wishaw saw just 66.2% of patients within the four hour target time.

Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP said:

“A&E departments across the country are dealing with unsustainable pressure.  

“We know that the number of people having to self-isolate is spiralling. That’s a real danger to the wider health service and beyond. The staff left behind face a desperate situation, as the workload piles up but there aren’t enough people to cope with it.

“Last week we saw Raigmore Hospital in Inverness, Aberdeen Royal Infirmary and Dr Gray’s Hospital in Elgin issuing a ‘code black’ status alert, which meant a reduction of services offered. Given the number of procedures that have already been delayed, that’s not something we can afford.  

“The Scottish Government need to come forward with concrete actions and urgent changes on isolation policies. That means a test and release system, as recommended by the Royal College of Surgeons and others. They must make sure Scotland has a functioning healthcare system.”


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