Highlands and Islands MSP Donald Cameron has expressed concern about the ability of A&E departments across the region to cope with the number of patients they are being required to treat.

Mr Cameron spoke out after recently published figures for December 2019 (available at: beta.isdscotland.org) revealed that the proportion of patients who have had to wait for more than 4 hours in the NHS Highland area rose to a record high.

He said: “The results for December 2019 were the worst since records began in June 2007. But, what makes them especially worrying, is that the figures for October and November were already the two worst results on record, even before we received December’s results.

“This trend is something that should concern everybody as it shows that the service seems to be under unprecedented pressure.

“Nicola Sturgeon has to accept that after 13 years in office we have every right to expect an improved health service. Unfortunately she appears to be delivering the precise opposite for people in the Highlands and Islands.

“Perhaps a bit less time spent debating flags and referendums, and a bit more time spent focusing on the needs of the NHS might be in order.”