Richard Lochhead contacts NHS Grampian seeking update on surgery waiting times
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RICHARD Lochhead has written to NHS Grampian's Chief Executive seeking an update on orthopaedic waiting times in Moray and the North East.
The MSP for Moray says he has been contacted by a number of constituents who are experiencing lengthy waits for surgery.
Mr Lochhead has written to the health board seeking details of steps that are being taken to address the backlog and ensure that patients are seen as soon as possible.
Mr Lochhead said: "In recent weeks I’ve been contacted by a number of constituents who are facing a very lengthy wait for surgery and many are living with a great deal of pain.
"Orthopaedic waiting times is something I’ve raised a number of times with NHS Grampian in recent months and I’ve now written to the Chief Executive once again to ask for an update on waiting times.
"NHS Grampian had previously told me they would be looking to establish a 12 bed unit at Dr Gray’s to increase capacity and I’ve sought an update as to where things are with that.
"We all recognise the pressure local health services have been under and I know that frontline staff are working flat out to deliver the best possible care for patients.
"It’s important that NHS Grampian is putting steps in place to support staff and to tackle these waiting times as quickly as possible."
NHS Grampian insist that they are doing all they can to reduce waiting times as they contend with reduced number of staff due to sickness, self isolation and relocation to other services.
That means that only the most clinically urgent cases are being prioritised.
Alasdair Pattinson, Hospital General Manager at Dr Gray's Hospital, said: "We have received Mr Lochhead's letter and will respond to him directly, covering all the points he has raised.
"Speaking generally, waits for orthopaedic treatment are, in common with many other forms of treatment, longer than we would wish.
"We publish estimated waiting times for both in-patient and outpatient procedures on our website to keep the public fully informed.
"We continue to prioritise people awaiting orthopaedic treatment on the basis of their clinical need and do our utmost to keep individuals informed about their likely waiting time."
More information on waiting times can be found here.