Sunday, 20 April 2014

More Nurses and Lower Waiting Time Shows Importance of Scotland's NHS Choices

Figures showing that there are more nurses per head of population in Scotland’s NHS than in NHS England have underlined the importance of Scotland being able to make its own choices when it comes to health.

A Parliamentary Question has revealed that while there are 7.5 qualified nurses per 1,000 people in Scotland, the equivalent number for England is just 5.4 qualified nurses.

Meanwhile a separate Parliamentary Question has revealed that NHS Scotland has lower waiting times than NHS England or Wales for a range of common procedures.

The figures show that in 2012/13, patients in Scotland waited an average of 37 days for bypass surgery – compared to 56 days in England and 135 days in Wales.

For a hip replacement, NHS Scotland patients waited on average 67 days compared to 77 days in England and 170 days in Wales.

And for a knee replacement, NHS Scotland patients waited on average 68 days compared to 82 days in England and 177 in Wales.

Commenting, SNP MSP Bob Doris who is the Deputy Convener of the Health and Sport Committee said:

“These are encouraging figures which confirm that Scotland’s Health Service is in good hands.

“With more qualified nurses per head of population than in England, NHS Scotland is better placed to ensure that people receive the highest standard of care possible.

“Meanwhile NHS Scotland is outperforming its counterparts south of the border when it comes to waiting times for the kind of common procedures that most patients need.

“It is by having full responsibility for our own NHS that has allowed us to protect the NHS in Scotland from the deeply damaging privatisation agenda that is undermining services south of the border.

“It is one of the clearest demonstrations possible that where decisions are made in Scotland, they reflect the priorities of people living here.

“With a Yes vote in September, it will be people in Scotland that are ultimately responsible for every decision affecting Scotland – not a Westminster system that has long since shown itself to be at odds with Scotland’s needs.”
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