Targets left unmet are leaving patients in agony says Conservative hopeful Haroun Malik

Scottish Conservative and Unionist candidate for Cumbernauld & Kilsyth Haroun Malik has called on the SNP Government to urgently support NHS Lanarkshire in order to guarantee that patients waiting on musculoskeletal treatment are seen as quickly as possible

Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 9:39 am
Haroun Malik

Mr Malik’s call comes after new figures revealed that over two-thirds of patients in NHS Lanarkshire were not seen within the SNP Government’s treatment target time of four weeks.

Figures given to the end of December show that almost 2,500 patients waited over four weeks, with a further 1,385 of these patients having to wait four months or longer to be treated.

Lawyer Mr Malik said: “While it is right that our NHS and our wonderful healthcare staff continue to tackle Covid cases, we cannot see thousands of patients in NHS Lanarkshire, who are lying in pain having to wait weeks and months on end to be seen.

“It is hugely alarming that musculoskeletal patients across Lanarkshire are waiting the longest of any health board in Scotland.

"The SNP Government must fully resource our health board in order to guarantee that patients are seen as quickly as possible.

“With almost 1,400 patients waiting four months or more, we are facing a real crisis in terms of treating those needing vital physio treatments across our communities in Cumbernauld & Kilsyth.

Peter McCrossan, NHS Lanarkshire Director for Allied Health Professions, said backlogs would be tackled.

He then said: “We would like to apologise to anyone who has experienced a lengthy wait for treatment. Urgent patients are still being appointed and we continue to support a substantial number of patients through secure NHS videoconferencing. National guidance on physical distancing and redeployment of staff to support critical care areas has resulted in a reduction in the number of patients we can see and treat.”

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said: “These services remain a priority for the Scottish Government and we continue to work with Health Boards to drive efficiency and improve outcomes for people.”

She added that 225 new staff would be recruited across Scotland to fully enable this process.