Over 40,000 people waited too long at NHS Lothian A&E departments in 2018, new figures released today reveal. 

Data published by ISD Scotland reveals that 36,799 people waited more than 4 hours at Accident and Emergency last year, with 4,332 waiting over 8 hours and 1060 waiting over 12 hours. 

These figures represent a 144.7% increase on 2017 figures for those waiting over four hours.

Scottish Labour said the figures evidenced the stress our health service is under, with overworked staff facing crowded A&E departments because of mismanagement elsewhere in the health service – such as staffing vacancies in social care and primary care. 

Kezia Dugdale MSP, Labour MSP for the Lothian region said: 

“Patients and staff in NHS Lothian deserve better than this.

“Scottish Labour has been concerned about the pressures on NHS Lothian for some time and these staggering figures expose the scale of the challenge NHS staff face in delivering patient care and how badly they have been let down by years of SNP mismanagement of our NHS. 

“A&E is the front door of the hospital, and the pulse check of our NHS as a whole. Increasing numbers of people waiting too long at A&E reveals unacceptable pressure in other parts of our health service such as in social care and primary care. 

“We already know that staff do not feel they are getting enough support and that the level of unfilled health posts is unsustainable. 

“Ministers set the health service targets for staff to hit and then do not deliver the support and resources needed. It simply isn’t good enough.”

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