The NHS is a fully devolved function in Scotland and thus Westminster cannot be blamed for failings. The staff do a superb job, something which I, as a cancer patient at the Western General, value.
However, there is something wrong with the way emergencies are handled. Whoever was in government I would hold to account for failings – SNP, Tory or Labour, it makes no difference. On Thursday, a 92-year-lady collapsed in the street in Crieff. A number of members of the public rendered assistance – I was the first person on the scene who had a mobile phone and thus called for an ambulance.
The temperature was just above freezing and luckily a passing motorist had a travel rug and a spare hat for the lady. We have an ambulance station in Crieff but it took 35 minutes for one to arrive.
It was a Crieff ambulance but had been on duty in Perth and, according to the crew, they had to cover a huge area extending down to the Forth Valley.
They must be totally over-worked and cannot be criticised in any way.
However, when the First Minister, Shona Robison and Kezia Dugdale et al are bandying words and insults across the chamber at Holyrood perhaps they would remember that it was an elderly lady lying on a cold street for 35 minutes.
I don’t know if the lady voted Yes, No or Don’t Care or which party – if any – she supported, but I do know she was a fellow citizen let down not by the stretched ambulance service but by a system that has forgotten humanity while concentrating on pointless rhetoric.
I would hope Shona Robison, as the accountable minister, would both comment and investigate.
(Dr) Roger I Cartwright