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A&E performance

Published: 12 Jan 2016 09:30

Weekly figures published.

Health Secretary Shona Robison has thanked NHS staff for their continued commitment during the demanding winter period.

A&E performance figures published today show that during the week ending January 3, 92.7 per cent of patients were seen and subsequently admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours at core A&E departments in Scotland.

This is 6.6 percentage points higher than the same week of 2015 when 86.1 per cent of patients were seen within four hours. Ms Robison said today's figures were a result of the hard work of NHS staff throughout the whole hospital system.

During the four hour period patients will be clinically assessed and undergo tests and treatment, before subsequently being discharged or admitted to hospital.

In winter A&E performance can fluctuate as pressure on the service increases, with the first few weeks of the year traditionally putting additional demands on the front door of the hospital.

Ms Robison said:

"Today's figures show a marked increase in performance during the same week of 2015, which is testament to the dedication of staff working right across the NHS.

"Winter brings additional pressures with the first few of weeks of the year typically being a very demanding time for the service. That is reflected in these figures for the week around the New Year, and we know that A&E departments have been very busy during the first week of January as well.

"Recent years show us that the first few weeks of the year are always when A&E performance is under most pressure. However, we have record investment and increased staffing in place to help meet demand through this winter period. A&E waiting times have consistently been better than last year and we are working closely with health boards to minimise any dips in performance.

"Nationally, our core accident and emergency waiting times have been better than elsewhere in the UK for the last eight months of published data from March to October 2015.

"However, I know there is still more to be done to retain and build on this performance, and to make sure that patients continue to receive the care they deserve.

"To meet additional demand, all health boards have winter resilience plans in place, which include increasing bed capacity and work to reduce delays in discharging patients from hospital. In addition, the Scottish Government is continuing to support all sites experiencing extra pressure.

"Over the past year we have rolled out six essential actions for unscheduled care, which aim to minimise long waits in A&E and assessment units by improving patient flow throughout all areas of the hospital and community.

"We have also invested an additional £10.7 million to help ease pressure on Scotland's NHS throughout the winter months. This is in addition to our winter guidance to health boards which issued two months earlier in 2015 compared to previous years."

Notes to editors

The full statistical publication is available on the ISD Scotland website: http://www.isdscotland.org/

Weekly A&E waiting time figures:

The publication of weekly A&E waiting time statistics for the week ending January 3, covers the emergency departments in Scotland which provide a 24 hour emergency medicine consultant led service.

The statistics relate to patients who were seen and subsequently admitted, transferred or discharged within 4, 8 and 12 hours.

The figures are also available on the NHS Performs website: http://www.nhsperforms.scot

Also published today is information on patient pathways through A&E. More information on this quarterly publication is available here: http://www.isdscotland.org/