NHS cash crisis

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Scotland has had three health ministers in three years.

In 2012, the number of trainee nurses was cut significantly. In 2013, the Royal College of Nursing warned of intolerable stress levels in the Scottish NHS and said that health services are only managing to meet demand bec­ause of nurses being willing to go the extra mile for free.

In 2014, we learned from the Institute for Fiscal Studies that the Scottish Government had cut real terms spending on health by 1.2 per cent while the UK Government had increased spending by 4.4 per cent.

On Wednesday, a Freedom of Information request highlighted that the Scottish Government’s budget was under­spent by £444 million last year.

Now we learn that in Scotland patients are being turned away from hospitals (your report, 8 January). Are any of these events related?

Scott Arthur

Edinburgh

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