A record number of patients in Scotland are waiting more than six weeks for imaging exams and treatment, according to recent statistics obtained by Scotland’s The Herald.
The latest figures from the Information Services Division (ISD)—part of NHS National Services Scotland—reveal waiting times for treatment and diagnostic tests, such as MRIs, CT scans, ultrasounds and colonoscopies, also greatly depend on geographic location.
According to the data, as of December 31, 2018, almost 700 people at one NHS location in Scotland waited more than six weeks for a diagnostic test or scan. Additionally, only 61 percent of patients at this location were being seen on time for their tests, compared to Scotland's national average of 78 percent.
In neighboring NHS facilities, however, only 29 percent of patients waited longer than six weeks with nearly 98 percent of all patients seen on time, according to the article.
“These figures show a service under continued strain with too many patients still waiting too long for tests, some of which could detect cancer,” Gordon Matheson, Cancer Research U.K.’s public affairs manager in Scotland, told The Herald. “With a welcome focus on screening and early detection of cancer, there’s an urgent need to comprehensively address workforce shortages.”
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