Toothpick tale sets off row over NHS delays
The Scottish Government has been lambasted for lengthy NHS delays after a man confessed to using a tooth pick to unblock his ear.
The Reformer revealed two weeks ago that Alexander Innes was told to wait for eight weeks to have his ear irrigated at Cambuslang Clinic.
And following the story people have taken to social media to say that Mr Innes is not alone.
Glenn Jamieson wrote on Facebook: “Got to agree here. I had the same issue with my ears and ended up using a tooth pick to unblock them. I could have easily bust the drum.
“Not the best idea but desperate times call for desperate measures.”
MSP James Kelly said Glenn is one of many people who are fed up with long waiting times for NHS treatment. He said he regularly hears stories from local patients about increasing waiting times.
The Labour MSP said: “The SNP’s record on the NHS is shameful. This is exemplified by the case highlighted in the Reformer.
“Time and time again local people are losing out because the SNP have spent the last ten years in power letting down our most important public services.
“I’ve challenged Shona Robison and I want her to know how poor her running of the NHS is. The SNP need to wake up to the reality of a decade in power and how disastrous their record is.”
But the Scottish Government said its new The Modern Outpatient strategy will address these problems.
This proposes that some patients, particularly those who are waiting for a routine check-up or test results, would be seen closer to home by a team of community healthcare professionals with close links to hospital departments.
It also vows to make better use of e-consultations and says action will be taken to reduce the number of unnecessary referrals.
Health secretary Shona Robison said: “We remain committed to ensuring patients get quick access to the services they require.
“We announced an extra £10 million to deliver 40,000 more outpatient appointments between November 2016 and March 2017 and have also provided an additional £50 million to improve waiting times at all stages of a patient’s journey through the NHS.
“In December 2016 we published a new strategy for responding to the rising demand in outpatient appointments, aiming to free up 400,000 appointments.
“We have recently completed the consultation exercise and will be pushing ahead with this over the next year.
“To meet increasing demand we are investing £200 million in a network of five new elective treatment centres across Scotland as well as expanding the Golden Jubilee National Hospital.
“These will enable people to be treated more quickly for planned surgery while easing pressure on unplanned and emergency treatment.”
Complaint Alexander Innes