This site is intended for health professionals only

At the heart of general practice since 1960

pulse june2020 80x101px
Read the latest issue online

The waiting game

'100 days' of out-of-hours care lost in Scotland due to unstaffed sessions

People in Scotland have lost more than 100 days’ worth of out-of-hours care from their GP in the last three months because of recruitment problems, research suggests.

The Scottish Labour party, which got the information through the Freedom of Information Act, said that general practices in Scotland were facing their biggest crisis general in a generation.

There were 826 unfilled out-of-house sessions in the last three months in Scotland, Scottish Labour party said, equating to around 2,478 hours of unfilled sessions, or 103 days.

Dr Richard Simpson, Scottish Labour public services spokesman, said: ‘Under the SNP Government in Edinburgh we have seen a drop in funding totalling over £1 billion, fewer medical students, fewer trainee vacancies being filled and now fewer out of hours sessions being staffed.

‘Action now is vital because general practice in trouble will affect every part of our NHS, from missed waiting times for mental health to increasing pressure on A&E because people can’t see a local doctor.’

In NHS Lanarkshire, where out-of-hours services have been reduced from five to two centres, there were 209 unfilled sessions, the Scottish Labour party said.

In Tayside where the centres in Perth & Angus are partly closed there were 275 unfilled sessions.

Readers' comments (3)

  • if you pay nothing you get nothing

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • There are really serious issues here in regarding to the pressures on OOHs but the headline does not help the cause. It will give the impression to the naive that almost a third of the year is not covered by the OOHs. Statistics are wonderful things but dangerous in the wrong hands.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • The figures are not true

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say