An extra £9 million of funding has been announced for hospital accident-and-emergency departments in a bid to help them meet waiting-times targets.
Health Secretary Shona Robison pledged additional funding for this year as she insisted the Scottish Government is determined to bring down waiting-times further.
Ministers want 95% of all patients who attend at A&E to be admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours but the NHS across Scotland has been failing to achieve that interim target.
In the first week of May, emergency departments dealt with 27,999 patients – with 92.3% of them dealt with within the target time.
The Scottish Government said the additional cash would help hospitals reduce the “inappropriate length” of some stays, particularly over weekend, and would help maximise the number of patients who are discharged before noon.
As part of this, a “daily dynamic discharge” scheme will be rolled out across Scotland, with the aim of reducing bed-blocking and making sure patients get out of hospital at the scheduled time.
Ms Robison said: “Scotland’s core A&Es have been the best-performing in the UK for more than two years and we have already put record investment and increased staffing in our hospitals to achieve long-term, sustainable improvements.
“However, we are determined to continue to improve and bring waiting-times down further. This additional funding will allow us to continue this work.
“Our action plan for unscheduled care has driven changes, speeding up the flow of patients and reducing delayed discharge.
“This is not just about improving systems in hospitals but about taking advantage of health and social care integration to ensure better links to community services.”
Source : HeraldScotland