SNP’s independence obsession sees waiting times hit new low

Patients and staff are suffering as a result of the SNP’s independence obsession as new statistics show a flagship waiting time target hit a new low across the NHS.

Figures published by ISD Scotland today show:

  • The 18-week referral to treatment standard was achieved for just 83.2% of patients in March 2017;
  • The target, measuring the time between receipt of a referral for treatment and it starting, is supposed to be met for 90% of patients;
  • Just four health boards met the target;
  • The target has not been met since June 2014.

These statistics are a damning indictment of the SNP’s mismanagement of our NHS. This flagship standard hasn’t been met in three years and performance has now hit an all-time low.

There can be no glossing over this. Responsibility for this waiting times crisis lies squarely at the door of SNP ministers.

On the day that Nicola Sturgeon launches the SNP manifesto, she should be personally apologising to the tens of thousands of patients who have waited longer than promised because of her government’s obsession with independence. She should apologise to hardworking staff too because they have issued warning after warning.

These statistics debunk the SNP’s claim that the NHS is their priority. The fact is that for the SNP independence will always come first.

Liberal Democrats are focused on making our public services the best again. Instead of allowing the NHS to drift down the agenda, we would end the NHS recruitment crisis and deliver a step change in mental health, putting a stop to the scandal of children waiting two years for the treatment they need.

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