Question reference: S6W-11353
- Asked by: Gillian Mackay, MSP for Central Scotland, Scottish Green Party
- Date lodged: 6 October 2022
Current status: Answered by Humza Yousaf on 1 November 2022
To ask the Scottish Government what the average waiting time has been for children to receive hospital treatment from audiology services in NHS Highland, following a GP or other referral, in each year since 2014.
Public Health Scotland (PHS) receives monthly data from most NHS Boards on the number of patients covered by the 18 weeks Referral to Treatment (RTT) standard seen within each specialty, including audiology. Due to the aggregate nature of this data collection, the requested detail on average length of wait and age are not available.
However, Table 1 shows the total number of patients seen and the number that waited over 18 weeks to be seen for audiology services across NHS Scotland, from January 2014 to December 2021 – the latest complete calendar year. This includes all patients reported as seen on the 18-week RTT pathway for audiology. Please note, almost all patients on this pathway are not admitted for treatment and their journey ends after seeing an audiologist in an outpatient setting.
Due to the complexities of 18 week RTT local data collection and reporting, the length of wait cannot be accurately measured by the Board of treatment for all patients. The impact of which for audiology is reflected in the number of unknown waits reported in the following table.
Table 1: Total patients seen and number of patients that waited over 18 weeks, January 2014 – December 2021, NHS Scotland, Audiology.
Total Number Seen
Number seen within 18 weeks
Number seen after 18 weeks
Source: PHS 18 Weeks RTT Database
* There is missing data for these years, as NHS Grampian have been unable to submit data since February 2020, NHS Ayrshire and Arran have not submitted data since April 2020 and NHS Tayside have been unable to submit data since May 2021. This should be taken into consideration when interpreting the data.