New statistics published today show hospitals are having to cancel the most operations since the pandemic began.
In June, the number of operations being cancelled by hospitals reached the highest level since March 2020, with 1,643 being called off.
Between May and June 2021, the number of scheduled elective operations cancelled increased by almost 30%. In the same time, the number of operations cancelled by hospitals based on capacity or non-clinical reasons increased from 274 to 417.
Responding to the figures, Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP said:
“These new figures show that even though life feels more normal, NHS services are under more pressure than ever.
“No hospital will be taking the decision to cancel operations lightly. Staff know it means more discomfort and pain for patients. But services are straining, and with too few resources clinicians are stuck between a rock and a hard place.
“Staff are already knackered after bearing the brunt of the pandemic. The Scottish Government have to find a way to show them a light at the end of the tunnel. That means meaningful support for those on the front line, with new clear targets and a comprehensive NHS recovery plan.”