Chronic pain patients facing “agonising” long waits for treatment

Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today criticised the government for putting chronic pain patients through “agonising” long waits for treatment, after new statistics showed hundreds of patients waited more than six months to get help.

The ISD Scotland figures show performance against the 18-week target has fallen to 60.5%, while 389 patients waited over 27 weeks from referral to first appointment at a chronic pain clinic.

Commenting, Mr Cole-Hamilton said:

“These long waits are agonising and have a serious impact on the lives of patients. Hundreds of people are being made to wait months for help with chronic pain that in many cases is seriously limiting their lives.

“Unfortunately, this is further evidence that the Scottish Government’s Waiting Times Improvement plan, published 16 months ago, has utterly failed.

“The Health Secretary must alleviate the pressure on our hardworking NHS professionals by giving them the support and resources they need to get the job done.”

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