Hume urges action as missed hospital appointments soar

Scottish Liberal Democrats have demanded SNP ministers take action to curb the extraordinary waste of NHS time and money after revealing that the number of missed hospital appointments in Scotland has soared to 800,000 in the last year.

Figures obtained from health boards by Scottish Liberal Democrats through Freedom of Information requests showed that non-attendance rates were as high as 12% in Tayside, 11% in Fife and 10% in Lothian.

In Greater Glasgow and Clyde, more than 225,000 appointments were missed in the year to 31 March 2014.

When compared to figures obtained previously by Scottish Liberal Democrats, figures show that missed hospital appointments have increased year on year.

Commenting, Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Jim Hume said:

“Our doctors and nurses cannot afford to waste time waiting for patients to turn up for appointments that have been forgotten. With our NHS creaking under SNP mismanagement, patients and NHS boards alike have an important role to play in preventing unnecessary problems.  

“Missed appointments are a waste of NHS time and money and we need to do what we can to ensure patients either turn up on time or let their hospital know they are not going to make their appointment.

“In many parts of Scotland, health boards have successfully used technologies to reduce the number of missed appointments. With missed appointments having soared to 800,000 in the last year, SNP ministers must take action to curb this extraordinary waste.”

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