By Lucy Ashton

Jackie Baillie has warned against normalising chaos in A&E as the latest figures show another week of poor performance.

At the emergency department at Paisley’s Royal Alexandra Hospital, where residents from West Dunbartonshire, Helensburgh and Lomond attend, the number seen within the Scottish Government’s own four-hour target time was well below the national average during the week ending May 15th.

Across Scotland during that period, 70.2 percent of patients were seen within this target time but at the RAH this was just 53.8 percent. Only the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh performed worse.

At the emergency department within the Paisley hospital, almost 200 people had to wait for more than eight hours and 59 faced a wait of more than 12 hours.

Dumbarton constituency MSP, Jackie Baillie, left,  said: “These dire figures confirm our emergency rooms have spent yet another week in crisis and the RAH is lagging well behind.“We cannot normalise chaos while lives are being put at risk by dangerously long waits.

“Incredible NHS staff are working tirelessly to keep things running but they shouldn’t be pushed to exhaustion by papering over the cracks caused by failures in leadership.

“The SNP need to do right by NHS patients and staff and get a grip on this life-threatening crisis, which has been raging on for months now.

“We don’t need any more commentary from the Health Secretary – we need action.”

Meanwhile, Scottish Labour have warned that Scotland’s NHS is “on life support” as waiting lists in Scotland soar to over 700,000.

Latest figures show that as of 31 March 2022 there were 708,586 people languishing on waiting lists, up from 680,067 at the end of December, meaning 1 in 8 Scots was on a NHS waiting list for diagnosis or treatment.

The figures also show waits increasing as 23.9 per cent of patients on a waiting list for a Treatment Time Guarantee eligible procedure have already waited over a year and 10,613 patients are still awaiting treatment despite being on the list for more than two years.  

50.4 per cent of patients in need of a diagnostic test have also been waiting more than the target 6 weeks, equivalent to 78,310 patients, and 5,347 of those waiting for an endoscopy have already waited over a year.

The damning new statistics prompted fresh concerns about the mounting pressures on health services in Scotland.

Labour reiterated their calls for action to tackle delayed discharge and a real NHS catch-up plan, including funding for temporary clinics and dedicated treatment centres.

 Jackie Baillie said: “Waiting lists are spiralling out of control in Scotland while the SNP sit on their hands.

“The SNP’s NHS Recovery plan has been left in tatters as waiting lists grow longer by the month, with 1 in 8 people now left languishing on waiting lists while their condition declines.

“NHS staff are working tirelessly to keep things afloat, but they are being badly failed by an absent government.

“Our NHS is on life support and it is patients and hardworking staff who are paying the price. We cannot afford to waste any more time while lives are on the line.

“We urgently need a real NHS catch-up plan, more support for our NHS staff, and effective action to tackle delayed discharge, which is piling pressure on every part of our healthcare system.”

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