Publication - Transparency data

NHS Scotland performance against LDP standards

Published: 18 Dec 2019

Performance data on the current Local Delivery Plan (LDP) Standards - priorities set and agreed between the Scottish Government and NHS Boards to provide assurance on NHS Scotland performance. 

NHS Scotland performance against LDP standards
Accident and Emergency waiting times

LDP standard

95% of patients to wait no longer than four hours from arrival to admission, discharge or transfer for A&E treatment. Boards to work towards 98%.

Current national performance

In August 2021, 77.8% of patients waited less than four hours.

About this LDP standard

95% of all A&E patients should be admitted, discharged or transferred within four hours of arrival at an A&E department across NHS Scotland (including Minor Injury Units). This standard is seen as a milestone towards returning to the 98% standard. This is necessary to ensure that all patients receive the most appropriate treatment, intervention, support and services at the right time, in the right place by the right person.

Although the standard is measured in the Accident & Emergency Department, Health Boards are required to ensure best practice is installed throughout the whole system, including health and social care, supporting joined up work to address wider issues of patient flow through each hospital that will safeguard the timely access to services across the patient’s journey and ensure the whole NHS system works together effectively.

Performance against this standard

The standard is for 95% of patients to wait no longer than four hours from arrival to admission, discharge or transfer for A&E treatment with boards to working towards 98%.

In August 2021, 77.8% of patients waited less than four hours.

As a result of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic, the number of attendances to A&E departments declined significantly in 2020 due to the public following health advice and staying home as well as hospitals redirecting patients at the front door to more appropriate services. However, as pandemic related restrictions begin to lessen, as expected we have seen a rise in non-Covid attendances and admissions. Combined with other factors such as reduced capacity due to infection control and staffing gaps due to isolation and annual leave, this is having a detrimental impact on performance recovery.

In December, the Scottish Government launched the Redesign of Urgent Care Programme which aims to ensure people are seen safely and to help the public access the right care in the right place at the right time, often as close to home as possible. Through this new approach NHS 24 will now provide a 24/7 service for those who think they need to go to A&E but it is not an emergency with the possibility to receive a virtual consultation with a clinician and, if required, a scheduled appointment at A&E. In time, we expect this will reduce the need for many people to go to A&E as they receive the self-care advice they need virtually and more attendances to hospital will be scheduled minimising delays where possible.

The graph below shows national performance on the four hour A&E standard since April 2015.

 

NHS Board level performance is shown for the most recent time period in the table below.

The table below shows the percentage of patients in A&E seen within 4 hours, by NHS Board, for August 2021.

NHS Board

August 2021

NHS AYRSHIRE & ARRAN

79.4%

NHS BORDERS

71.2%

NHS DUMFRIES & GALLOWAY

82.4%

NHS FIFE

83.6%

NHS FORTH VALLEY

74.6%

NHS GRAMPIAN

82.0%

NHS GREATER GLASGOW & CLYDE

77.9%

NHS HIGHLAND

88.8%

NHS LANARKSHIRE

67.5%

NHS LOTHIAN

72.7%

NHS ORKNEY

96.8%

NHS SHETLAND

97.5%

NHS TAYSIDE

92.1%

NHS WESTERN ISLES

97.5%

NHS SCOTLAND

77.8%

Source: A&E data mart, ISD Scotland

Further information

PHS publishes a release which contains weekly activity and waiting times statistics for the 30 Emergency Departments in Scotland which provide a 24 hour emergency medicine consultant led service. Users are advised to view these statistics as providing a useful insight on activity levels, which when taken together with PHS’s monthly report, provide a balanced package of timely and comprehensive statistics.

The most recent report showed that over the week ending 11:59pm on Sunday 03 October 2021:

  • there were 25,123 attendances to Scotland’s 30 Emergency Departments
  • the proportion of attendances to those 30 Emergency Departments that were seen and subsequently admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours was 71.3%

Please note that the monthly and weekly figures are not directly comparable. The four hour Accident and Emergency waiting time Standard relates to all sites that carry out accident and emergency activity in Scotland. This includes the 30 Emergency Departments as well as Minor Injuries Units (MIUs) and other facilities. The weekly figures however are based on only the 30 Emergency Departments and not the Minor Injuries Units.

Further information on weekly emergency department activity and waiting time statistics.

Healthcare quality strategy for NHSScotland

Emergency department activity and waiting times statistics

Related National Outcomes

Page updated : 13 October 2021