Updated: The Scotsman colludes with Labour and Tories to fake another crisis in NHS Scotland

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In the Flagging Scotsman today:

‘Scots NHS ‘staffing crisis’ as thousands of nurses quit. The number of nurses leaving the NHS in Scotland has reached a new high prompting fears of a “staffing crisis” in hospitals. More than 4,300 nurses quit the service last year, it has emerged, while long-term consultant vacancies are also on the rise. The news was among a raft of gloomy NHS statistics which also showed more than 580 operations were cancelled in April because hospitals could not cope, longer waits in hard-pressed hospital emergency departments and fresh concerns over mental health treatment delays.’

Needless to say, ‘opposition’ politicians are given plenty space to confirm the presence of a crisis and to lay the blame for it at the door of the Scottish Government. If you’re feeling strong and stable in your gut, they can be read here:

https://www.scotsman.com/news/scots-nhs-staffing-crisis-as-thousands-of-nurses-quit-1-4749723

Number of nurses in Scotland is growing steadily

On the number of nurses, here are some facts. In Nursing, excluding Midwifery, there were 56 468.2 FTE in NHS Scotland, in September 2017. So, the 4 300 leaving account for around 7% of the total and this includes those retiring. The Scotsman report does not tell us how many new entrants there have been in the same year nor does it give us the wider historical picture showing a steady and gradual increase in the number of nurses in NHS Scotland. See this:

staffing

http://www.isdscotland.org/Health-Topics/Workforce/Publications/data-tables2017.asp

Number of nurses in Scotland is nearly twice that per head of population, of England

In NHS England, the Kings Fund state:

‘The number of nursing staff (nurses and health visitors) has increased by 1.8 per cent from 281,064 FTEs in 2010 to 286 020 FTEs in 2017.’

https://www.kingsfund.org.uk/projects/nhs-in-a-nutshell/nhs-staffing-numbers

The UK Government site says:

‘There were 314,966 Nurses & health visitors, an increase of 2,790 (0.9%) since 2014. There were 281,474 FTE Nurses & health visitors, an increase of 2,494 (0.9%) since 2014.

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/511519/nhs-staf-2015-over-rep.pdf

So, Scotland with only 10% of England’s population, has 19% of the number of nurses or nearly twice as many per head of population.

Consultant staffing in Scotland is 43% up under SNP

On consultants

As of September 2017, there were 5 189.8 consultants working in NHS Scotland. Thought there were still 430.5 vacancies still to be filled, the shortage fell in the previous quarter by 9.6% and the annual overall number of consultants rose by 3.5%. Vacancy rates for consultants are also down from 8.3% in 2016 to 7.5% in 2017. More strikingly, consultant numbers have risen by 43.1% under the current government! To put that in context, overall NHS Scotland staffing has risen by 25.4% in the ten years of SNP administration.

Also, in 2017, the number of specialists in intensive care increased by 27.5% and the number of specialists in acute internal medicine increased by 49.2%!

https://isdscotland.scot.nhs.uk/Health%2DTopics/Workforce/Publications/data-tables2017.asp

NHS England cancelling operations at 3 times the rate of NHS Scotland

This piece is getting too long, so see this for more detail:

‘NHS England cancelling operations at three times the rate in Scotland!’ or ‘With 10% of the population to care for, NHS Scotland cancels only 3.3% of NHS England operations cancelled in January’

Update from reader Legerwood:

‘The number of operations carried out in April 2018 were 10% higher than in April 2017 so hardly surprising that the number cancelled for reasons other than clinical ones or the patient cancelling the op have increased compared to April 2017 – 587 vs 490 respectively. However, when the numbers are converted to percentages, which is the only way to make a valid comparison, then in April 2018 2.2% of operations were cancelled for other reasons compared to 2% in April 2017. Quite a different picture. Furthermore the percentage of ops cancelled by the patient or for clinical reasons were lower in April 2018 compared to April 2017.’

I haven’t tackled the mental health issue because I can’t find reliable figures.

Finally, the Scotsman has previous on this. See:

Scotsman under fire over dishonest reporting of four-doctor protest, against NHS England, but at Holyrood (?), in latest round weaponizing NHS in proxy war against SNP

as does the Herald:

Pressure on Herald editor to resign over misrepresentation of NHS successes as Health Secretary is nominated for award as most successful in UK

 

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7 thoughts on “Updated: The Scotsman colludes with Labour and Tories to fake another crisis in NHS Scotland

  1. Brian Powell June 6, 2018 / 9:44 am

    My theory is that the opposition parties, in collusion with the BBC misrepresent, distort and lie about the success in Scotland so that, if sufficient damage is done to the SNP that it loses power, then the success stories can be released to show this is result of the new Unionist government’s actions.

    Like

  2. Legerwood June 6, 2018 / 11:00 am

    The Herald also reported this yesterday and reported the number of cancelled ops in April 2018 compared to April 2017 – 587 vs 490.- which seems like a big increase until you look at the total number of ops carried out in April 2018 vs 2017 which of course the Herald did not do.

    The number of operations carried out in April 2018 were 10% higher than in April 2017 so hardly surprising that the number cancelled for reasons other than clinical ones or the patient cancelling the op have increased compared to April 2017 – 587 vs 490 respectively.

    However, when the numbers are converted to percentages, which is the only way to make a valid comparison, then in April 2018 2.2% of operations were cancelled for other reasons compared to 2% in April 2017. Quite a different picture. Furthermore the percentage of ops cancelled by the patient or for clinical reasons were lower in April 2018 compared to April 2017.

    SID Scotland publishes reports every Tuesday and list in advance which reports will be published and when. You only have to look at their site on a Tuesday to see what the screaming headlines are going to be.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Gerry Robertson June 6, 2018 / 12:11 pm

    Noted but it is not just the miserable standard of the MSM in Scotland. Just watched an episode of effectively Police in Yorkshire chasing young men in cars with the caption ‘Knife crime in the UK has risen by 21%’. No qualification with Scotland branded alongside an otherwise failing UK with rising tide of crime. The same applies to levels of homeless, personal debt, rent arrears, businesses going bankrupt etc etc….. TV productions ALWAYS lump Scotland especially when its bad news. It all goes to suit its purpose of showing Scotland in a worst or just as bad light as rUK. .

    Liked by 1 person

  4. stewartb June 6, 2018 / 7:34 pm

    From the UK Nursing and Midwifery Council’s report “The NMC Register’ published March 2018:

    “5,577 fewer people from the EEA joined our register in 2017/2018 than in 2016/2017 (a drop of 87 percent). And 881 more people left it (an increase of 29 percent).”

    “After the result of the Brexit referendum, it took a long time to announce what would happen to EU nurses working in the UK. My colleagues and I needed to plan our lives, and could not wait for a letter telling us to leave.” EEA SURVEY RESPONDENT

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Jimmy June 7, 2018 / 7:32 pm

    Give us a referendum!! Oh, wait……..

    Liked by 1 person

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