Covid Scotland: A&E wait times hit worst since early January

In the week ending Feb. 13, only 73.2% of people who presented to the emergency and emergency department (A&E) were seen and subsequently admitted or discharged within four hours, compared with 74.4% the previous week, according to data published by Public Health Scotland.

The Scottish Government aims to have 95% of patients seen within four hours, a target that has not been reached since July 2020.

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The waiting time for accidents and emergencies is at its lowest level since the beginning of January. Picture: John Devlin

Of the 23,849 people who went to emergency departments, 498 had to wait more than 12 hours and 1,417 more than eight hours.

Scottish Tory health spokesman Dr Sandesh Gulhane said waiting times should be reduced as the peak of the Omicron option has passed.

“It is unacceptable that more than a quarter of patients wait more than four hours for an appointment, and it is unacceptable that almost 500 patients have to wait for an appointment for half a day, because this will lead to a senseless loss of life,” he said.

“It seems like every week I call [health secretary] Humza Yusuf to deal with this crisis and develop a coherent plan to overcome it, but nothing changes.

“The Minister of Health seems committed to his inadequate Covid recovery plan when it is clear that it is not up to the mark.

“Emergency front line staff in Scotland with limited resources must be desperate – they have worked heroically throughout the pandemic but the SNP government has let them down.”

Scottish Labor health spokeswoman Jackie Bailey said “enough is enough”.

“For months, Humza Yousaf has allowed our emergency and emergency departments across Scotland to swing from crisis to crisis as thousands of Scots wait for hours for life-saving treatment,” she said.

“The frontline staff has been working tirelessly, but the SNP government has consistently let them down by refusing to acknowledge that the NHS, our most valuable service, is in crisis.

“We cannot let dangerously long waits at A&E become the new normal.

“Enough – Humza Yusuf must act to end the chaos in the emergency and emergency rooms before people die.”

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