NHS Winter 2014-15: Scotland

  • 3 March 2015
  • From the section Health

Scotland has the most stringent waiting time target for A&Es in the UK. The 14 NHS boards are expected to see 98% of patients within four hours. That measures the point from arrival to admission, discharge or transfer. There is an interim target of 95% which means most boards are aiming for this.


For the other UK nations the target is 95%. Since 16 February, the data has been published weekly. Prior to that it was published quarterly.

Scotland: Major A&E units only, January
Health Board Total patients % seen within four hours % seen within 12 hours
Orkney 406 99.0 100.0
Tayside 5,342 98.8 100.0
Shetland 691 97.8 100.0
Western Isles 517 96.9 100.0
Dumfries & Galloway 3,623 96.0 100.0
Highland 3,914 94.8 100.0
Fife 4,971 89.9 99.7
Borders 2,233 89.7 100.0
Lothian 17,192 88.4 99.8
Lanarkshire 14,920 86.9 99.1
Forth Valley 4,866 86.7 99.3
Grampian 8,112 86.1 99.7
Ayrshire & Arran 9,467 81.7 99.3
Greater Glasgow & Clyde 31,875 77.7 99.1

Eleanor Bradford, BBC Scotland health correspondent

Scotland has just recorded its worst performance against Accident and Emergency waiting time targets in recent years.

For the first time, weekly performance figures have also been published.

These give little comfort to the Scottish Government, suggesting that people are waiting longer in Scotland's major emergency departments than in English A&Es.

However Scotland does seem to be performing better than Wales and Northern Ireland.

The reasons for Scotland's difficulties are the same as the rest of the UK - more demand, sicker patients and blocked beds because many of those who have been treated can't access a care home place.


Scotland also publishes emergency admissions of patients from A&E every quarter.

Figures on delayed discharges are also collected - similar to days lost to beds blocked.

From April 2015 a new target for delayed discharges is being set. It says no patient should wait more than 14 days to be discharged from hospital into a more appropriate care setting once treatment is complete.

Norovirus weekly updates on wards or bays closed in hospitals are published by Health Protection Scotland.

Ambulance handover times at A&E are not collected or published in the same way in Scotland.