Scottish Liberal Democrat leader and health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today urged the Health Secretary to stop hiding behind the pandemic and take "immediate radical action" after newly released figures show that only 69.8% of A&E attendees were seen within the 4-hour target.
Public Health Scotland data for the week ending February 20th shows 1,749 patients waited more than 8 hours to be seen, and 627 waited for more than 12.
Mr Cole-Hamilton said:
“These numbers are shocking. Let's be clear, this is what 15 years of SNP mismanagement, poor workforce planning and lack of vision produced. Exhausted staff and patients waiting interminable queues.
“It is unacceptable that almost one third of patients are not seen within four hours. Last week, the Royal College of Emergency Medicine estimated that in 2021, 500 people had died while waiting to be seen in A&E.
“The SNP/Green government voted down our staff burnout prevention strategy, and still haven’t responded to our proposals for a health and social care staff assembly. They are watching this crisis go by without doing what is needed.
“NHS patients and staff are in dire need of new hope. The Health Secretary must stop hiding behind the pandemic and deliver the immediate radical action that is so needed.”