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‘Hypocritical’ SNP relying on independent health providers

The Scottish Conservatives have accused the SNP of “startling hypocrisy” after it emerged it is relying heavily on private hospitals to prop up Scotland’s ailing NHS.

Figures obtained by the party have revealed thousands of inpatient and outpatient operations funded by the NHS are being carried out by the independent sector in Scotland.

The statistics - published in a Scottish Parliamentary written answer to Miles Briggs MSP, Scottish Conservative shadow health secretary - show that, since 2007, 68,175 NHS-funded operations have been carried out by the independent sector in Scotland.

That’s an average of almost 6,000 a year since the SNP took office.

This is despite Nicola Sturgeon’s statement, when she was Health Secretary, that the independent sector should only be used ‘at the margins’ of the NHS.

According to the figures the numbers of operations carried out by the sector have fallen over the last few years, at the same time that the SNP has totally failed to reduce waiting times.

The Scottish Conservatives are therefore calling for Jeane Freeman, the health secretary, to utilise the sector further for the benefit of patients waiting in pain and suffering.

Miles Briggs, Scottish Conservative shadow health secretary said:

 

“These figures show that the independent sector has been propping up the SNP’s health service for years.

“That makes the SNP’s position on the matter totally insincere and illogical – the nationalists are guilty of startling hypocrisy.

“It is absolutely right that the independent sector is used to help patients access timely treatment, but the SNP cannot pretend otherwise.

“Waiting times are longer than ever under this SNP administration, and the SNP must do everything possible to reduce them.

“The sad fact is that even with the independent sector bailing them out the SNP’s mismanagement of the health service is causing patients to suffer unnecessarily.

“The SNP must drop their ideological blinkers and run a health service fit for a modern Scotland.”

Ends

Notes to editors:

 

Miles Briggs (Lothian)(ScottishConservativeandUnionistParty): To ask the Scottish Government what information it has on the number of operations that have taken place in the private healthcare sector in each year since 1999. (S5W-24098)

Year

Number of Inpatient Operations

Number of Outpatient Operations

1999

397

 

2000

245

 

2001

638

 

2002

645

 

2003

1,066

3

2004

1,185

 

2005

1,922

38

2006

1,807

1807

2007

2,288

419

2008

4,085

364

2009

6,075

395

2010

2,447

401

2011

1,581

221

2012

6,592

383

2013

7,832

1,608

2014

9,034

1,386

2015

8,864

1,366

2016

4,022

227

2017

3,734

491

2018

4,230

130

The full answer can be found here – page 5 https://www.parliament.scot/S5ChamberOffice/WA20190722.pdf   

Nicola Sturgeon spoke out against investment in private healthcare when she was health secretary and said that NHS Scotland should use it only “at the margins”. link

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