A&E waiting times slip below government target in September

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Performance at A&E departments in Scotland has slipped below a national target.

The latest official figures show 93.5% of patients attending A&E in September were dealt with within the four-hour waiting time target – under the Scottish Government’s benchmark of 95%.

The 95% target was met over the previous three months.

The proportion of patients facing longer waits in A&E also increased slightly in September with 774 (0.6%) waiting more than eight hours and 116 (0.1%) waiting more than 12 hours.

The previous month 356 (0.3%) patients spent more than eight hours in an A&E department and 43 ( less than 0.1%) patients waited more than 12 hours.

ISD Scotland said there were 140,941 attendances at casualty departments in September, of which just under a quarter (24.3%) were admitted to hospital.

Health Secretary Shona Robison said: “Scotland’s core accident and emergency departments have outperformed those in the rest of the UK for two and a half years.

“This is partly due to our focus on improving patient flow, ensuring that once people arrive into A&E, they can be admitted or transferred in a timely way. Health boards continue to work on this as a priority.

“We monitor waiting times closely and while we can expect to see some weekly fluctuation, especially as we come into winter, we have put record investment and increased levels of staffing into hospitals, and included an extra £14 million for health boards this year to support sustainable improvements in unscheduled care, including £5 million I announced in October to support winter resilience.”