South of Scotland MSP Colin Smyth has described figures from a recent report which showed 15.1% of chronic pain sufferers across Ayrshire and Arran, are waiting over the 18-week legal waiting time target for treatment, as “totally unacceptable.”

The figures were revealed in a Scottish Government report published on 12 June by their Information Services Division -; ISD Scotland -; on waiting times for chronic pain.

15.1% of patients seen over the first three months of 2018 were forced to wait above the 18-week target for their first appointment. The figures show little improvement from the last three months of 2017.

The same figures also revealed that 86.7% of patients attending a pain psychology appointment were forced to wait over the 18-week target for their first appointment. This is an 86.7% increase from the same period last year.

Colin Smyth MSP said, “These waiting times are totally unacceptable for people suffering from chronic pain across Ayrshire and Arran. The figures released in this report show that services for patients experiencing chronic pain are only getting worse, not better.

The fact that the NHS recruitment crisis is affecting local services could mean that these waiting times are unlikely to improve anytime soon. After a decade of SNP mismanagement of our NHS we now have patient services getting worse. It’s time the SNP started to resource our NHS properly and tackled the recruitment crisis that is impacting on patient care.”

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