New figures for the quarter ending 30 June 2022 have shown that only one health board in the south of Scotland has met the Scottish Government’s 62-day standard which states that 95% of eligible patients should wait a maximum of 62 days from urgent suspicion of cancer referral to first cancer treatment.
The figure for NHS Borders was 96.4 per cent, however, all the other health boards fell below. In NHS Dumfries and Galloway the figure was 79.2 per cent; 74.3 per cent in NHS Ayrshire and Arran; 77.2 per cent in NHS Lothian and 78.8 per cent in NHS Lanarkshire.
The statistics show that the maximum wait in the south region was 262 days recorded in NHS Dumfries and Galloway.
South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth said: “These figures are deeply worrying because we know that any delay in diagnosing cancer can have a huge impact on the success of treatment.
“The SNP Government has ignored warning after warning about the pressure on NHS services and the impossible demands being placed on staff without the numbers of doctors and nurses they need, leaving us now with a ticking timebomb of untreated cancer that will cost lives and overwhelm our NHS.
“The government cannot waste any more time before delivering a real cancer catch-up plan we have needed all along, so that everyone can get the treatment they need, when they need it.”