Scotland's A&E waiting times target met for first time in three years

Target was last met in August 2017

Scotland’s Health Secretary Jeane Freeman has praised “the ongoing hard work and dedication of staff in our NHS” after a target to ensure 95% of all accident and emergency cases are seen within four hours was met in May for the first time in almost three years.

The Scottish Government set the goal in 2007 but it has failed to meet it in recent years.

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The figure dropped as low as 83.8% in December.

Scotland's A&E waiting times target has been met for first time since 2017.

In May, 95.2% of patients were seen during the allotted time, a rise of 0.3% from the previous month according to NHS statistics.

This represents the first time the goal has been hit since August 2017, when the figure stood at 95%.

In weekly statistics published for June, the target was hit for every week but one, with an average of 95.2%.

Attendances at A&E are also beginning to recover, with 88,608 attendances during May, rising from a low of 65,114 in April – the month after the coronavirus lockdown took effect.

In the weekly statistics, a slight increase can be seen in the week ending June 28 from the week before, going from 21,356 to 21,673.

During May, 118 people spent more than eight hours in A&E and of those, 19 were there for more than 12 hours.

Ms Freeman added: “As we move towards carefully and gradually resuming NHS services, which were paused as a result of Covid-19, I want to remind people that emergency departments remain open for people who need immediate care – but we would urge those with non-urgent concerns to use alternative treatment options available which are often more convenient and closer to home."

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