Health Boards Delivering on Waiting Times Targets

Unvalidated management information on NHS performance showed that on December 31, 2007:

  • No patient had waited more than 18 weeks for a first outpatient consultation following a GP referral
  • No patient had waited more than 18 weeks for inpatient/day case treatment
  • It is estimated that NHSScotland delivered the standard waiting times target for key diagnostic tests
  • Main hospital A&E Departments achieved the four hours target for admission, discharge or transfer during December 2007
  • The cataract treatment whole journey target of 18 weeks was met
  • The whole journey target of 16 weeks for cardiac intervention was met
  • The target that no patient would wait more than 24 hours for hip surgery following admission to a specialist unit following fracture was met

On a visit to Stirling Royal Infirmary's Accident and Emergency Department Nicola Sturgeon welcomed the news and praised NHS staff for their hard work in meeting these new waiting times standards. This will bring substantial benefits to thousands of patients.

Ms Sturgeon said:

"Staff through-out the NHS have played a vital role in achieving these results. They should take great satisfaction from the knowledge that their hard work in improving waiting times targets will ensure the best possible services for patients.

"I want to thank staff across the NHS for their dedication and commitment to delivering high quality healthcare for the people of Scotland. The progress that is being shown across a wide range of targets is only possible through the goodwill and effort of everyone working in the health service.

"It is extremely positive news that patients are now being treated more quickly than ever before. This will make a real difference to them and their families as they cope with the demands of being unwell."

On December 31, 2007 national waiting time targets for a first outpatient consultation, inpatient and day case treatment, key diagnostic tests, Coronary Heart Disease, cataract surgery, hip fracture and A&E waiting times were due to be delivered by NHS Scotland.

As validated data is not available until the end of February Boards have provided an early indication of progress, based on information gathered for management purposes. This suggests that they have delivered against all targets.

This information is not validated and may change slightly once official validated statistics are published on February 26, 2008.

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