Tens of thousands waiting for tests and treatment


Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP today said “patients and NHS staff need new hope” after statistics revealed that more than 100,000 people are waiting for key diagnostic tests and Nicola Sturgeon’s Treatment Time Guarantee is being missed 200 times a day. 

Public Health Scotland statistics published today show: 

  • 115,000 patients were waiting to be seen for eight key diagnostic tests at the end of June – 30% higher than pre-pandemic levels.
  • Almost 40% of patients waiting for these key diagnostic tests have been waiting longer than the 6-week standard.
  • The First Minister’s legally binding 12 week Treatment Time Guarantee being breached for 78,000 patients either seen during June 2021 or still waiting for treatment at the end of that quarter.
  • 29,270 of these patients waiting over a year.

Alex Cole-Hamilton commented:

“Patients deserve better than the NHS Recovery Plan published last week which was littered with reheated announcements, some stretching as far back as 2017. 

“The legally binding Treatment Time Guarantee, which these statistics show being missed for another 78,000 patients didn’t even get a mention in that plan. 

“Tens of thousands of patients need new hope that they will be diagnosed and treated quickly. Staff need new hope that the relentless pressure will be eased. The government can’t get away with not setting out a proper roadmap for meeting these critical targets.” 


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