‘Valid’ A&E data

It is little wonder that the Royal College of Nursing have raised concerns about the NHS being used for political point-scoring in Scotland (your report, 10 January).

This week began with the news that NHS boards had been asked by the Scottish Government not to release A&E waiting time data to journalists as it had to first be “validated”. Fair enough, but the week then ended with the same Scottish Government releasing “unvalidated” A&E waiting time data as, although alarming, it was marginally better than the rest of the UK and so was deemed to be in the public interest. No doubt information relating to how many operations were cancelled to reduce A&E waiting times will have to be carefully validated 
before release?

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Dr Scott Arthur

Buckstone Gardens

Edinburgh