SCOTS NHS IS FORCED TO CALL IN HELP FROM ENGLAND
New blow for SNP over hospital ‘failings’
NHS MANAGERS have been sent from England to help a crisis-hit Scottish health board, in the latest embarrassment for the SNP.
The team has been deployed at NHS Lothian by the Scottish Government – despite ministers’ repeated claims that the NHS here outperforms the English health service.
NHS Lothian is already under fire after Health Secretary Jeane Freeman refused to allow its longawaited children’s hospital to open over safety concerns. Now bosses have admitted that experts from the north of England are spending two days a week taking a ‘deep dive’ into waiting lists and capacity for several specialities.
The programme covers ‘all acute services within NHS Lothian’.
Scottish Tory health spokesman Miles Briggs said: ‘If our NHS can learn from other parts of the UK when it comes to delivering better
care, then that’s exactly what it should do. But this makes a mockery of Nicola Sturgeon’s relentless rhetoric about Scotland’s health service being superior to England’s. It’s time for the SNP to admit its own brutal failings in managing Scotland’s NHS over the last 12 years.’
NHS waiting time performance has slumped in Lothian, with only three-quarters of patients seen with the Government’s Waiting Time Treatment Guarantee of 12 weeks. Six years ago the figure was 96 per cent.
Almost 23,000 patients have waited more than 12 weeks for an outpatient appointment in the area. NHS Lothian was criticised for bullying and harassment in an independent report last year after a whistleblower revealed A&E waiting times were being falsely recorded.
The North of England Commissioning Support Team provides specialist expertise to health boards across the UK.
In board papers published this month, NHS Lothian said the team had been commissioned by the Scottish Government ‘to undertake a deep dive, focused programme of work’.
The experts will ‘identify areas of potential improvement’ to meet waiting time targets in outpatient and inpatient appointments in urology, orthopaedics, vascular and colorectal services.
NHS Lothian’s £150million Royal Hospital for Children and Young People, which was due to open last month, remains closed after problems with the ventilation system were found.
The Government brought in experts from the Commissioning Support Team two years ago when NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde ran into problems with waiting times in A&E.
The move flies in the face of Miss Sturgeon’s claims regarding the superiority of the NHS in Scotland. Launching her programme for government in 2016 she said: ‘Our A&E facilities have been the best-performing in the UK for the last three years.’
NHS Lothian said the team would look at ‘a number of services… to identify areas of potential improvement’.
A Government spokesman said: ‘This is a short-term commission that is expected to conclude before autumn. It’s not unusual to commission expert support for the NHS in Scotland and is a good opportunity to share learning and good practice from other parts of the UK.’
Source: Press Reader
But we STILL have the rabid cybernats claiming we have a better NHS than the rest of the country.
Clearly, we do not.
The SNP are the problem, not the solution.