A&E waiting time targets missed by all but two Scottish health boards

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ONLY two of Scotland’s health boards met Accident and Emergency waiting time
targets, figures show.

The national standard set out that at least 98 per cent of patients should be seen in A&E and either admitted to hospital, transferred elsewhere for care, or discharged within four hours.

Statistics yesterday showed just two of the 14 regional health boards achieved this in the last quarter of this year.

In NHS Tayside and NHS Shetland more than 98 per cent of patients were dealt with within four hours in each of previous four months.

But seven – NHS Ayrshire and Arran, NHS Dumfries and Galloway, NHS Forth Valley, NHS Grampian, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, NHS Lanarkshire and NHS Lothian – did not achieve the waiting times standard for accident and emergency in any of the four months.

Other boards managed to hit targets for some, but not all the four months. Across Scotland
in September a total of 95 per cent of patients in A&E units were either admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours.

The total number of attendances increased from 1.5 million in 2001-02 to 1.6m in 2011-12.

A Scottish Government spokeswoman said: “Our aim is to have as many people as possible treated within four hours of their admission to accident and emergency.

“We are continuing work to improve this figure.”

But Labour’s Jackie Baillie said: “The SNP’s target for emergency waiting times now has not been met since 2009. Alex Neil has to get a grip on what is happening in the NHS.”