Babies and wee girls dying, women with breast cancer and suicidal young men AND NOW Reporting Scotland brings you FGM and more of it than there is, of course.

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Only one week to go and the SNP are still strong in the polls despite the daily health scares on BBC Scotland. What can they do? FGM? No! Surely, they wouldn’t try to exaggerate that.

On Reporting Scotland last night, we heard an extended report into the dreadful phenomenon of FGM. The reporter told us that ‘medics in our cities’ had reported more than 200 cases in the last two years.

According to Police Scotland there were 28 cases in 2018. The official figures for 2019 are not yet released.

https://www.scotland.police.uk/assets/pdf/434027/526774/526824/19-2024-response?view=Standard

A Freedom of Information request to police Scotland revealed the above. If such crimes were occurring with similar frequency across the UK, as they are in Scotland, then the figures for the UK would be around 12 times greater They are not.

There were nearly 2 000 UK cases of FGM in just the first three months of 2019 suggesting a shocking 8 000 per year 286 times as many or 24 times as many per capita as in Scotland.

https://digital.nhs.uk/data-and-information/publications/statistical/female-genital-mutilation/january-to-march-2019

And, ‘medics in our cities?’ The BBC editorial guidelines tell them not to rely on single or unattributed sources. Their Royal Charter obliges them to inform. So, failed on both counts.

93% can see a GP in 2 days but Herald Health Correspondent lies for 4th time as election looms

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‘Because none of what you write is true?’

Here’s the up-to-date evidence:

Access to a GP

Based on a Scottish survey published in July 2019, we can see that while overall levels of satisfaction with the quality of the service offered by GPs did not differ significantly, it is in the ease of access that the Scottish system seems to be performing much better:

https://thoughtcontrolscotland.files.wordpress.com/2019/07/accessscot.png?w=398&h=191
https://www.gov.scot/binaries/content/documents/govscot/publications/statistics/2018/04/health-care-experience-survey-2017-18-national-results/documents/00534419-pdf/00534419-pdf/govscot%3Adocument/00534419.pdf

 93% reporting 2-day access!

GP Workload

According to BBC Scotland News in June 2019:

‘Patients should get appointments with GPs lasting at least 15 minutes rather than 10, according to the Royal College of GPs. In a report, it warns nearly 40% of GPs in Scotland feel overwhelmed by their workload at least once a week.’

Neither the report by the Royal College of General Practitioners. Fit for the future: a vision for general practice. May 2019. nor its compendium of evidence contain any such phrase. The word ‘overwhelmed’ does not appear at all and the word ‘workload’ is never associated with ‘Scotland’ or indeed with any figure but, in the BBC report (only), we see this:

‘RCGP Scotland chairwoman Dr Carey Lunan said: “Nearly 40% of GPs report that they feel so overwhelmed by their daily tasks that they feel they cannot cope at least once per week.’

The claim seems to be based entirely on an interview with Dr Lunan. We do not know whether she refers to the whole sample or to some Scottish sub-set available to her. Neither the report nor the compendium of evidence provides any raw data broken down into a Scottish sub-set. There is, of course, no methodology offered.

Perhaps there is another report, unspecified by the BBC or by Dr Lunan. I’d be happy to see and consider it, especially its methodology, but the RCGP only seem to have this one.

Scotland is mentioned in the report but only in positive sense. See these:

Page 8: In Scotland, 83% of people rate the overall care provided by their GP practice positively.

Page 9:

https://thoughtcontrolscotland.files.wordpress.com/2019/06/nogpspercountrygraph.png?w=534&h=242
 https://www.rcgp.org.uk/-/media/Files/News/2019/RCGP-fit-for-the-future-report-may-2019.ashx?la=en

There are no negative comments regarding GPs and their workloads anywhere in the 60 pages of the Compendium of Evidence.

McArdle’s previous big fibs:

  1. GP contractors

In the desperate struggle for readers and clicks, the Herald tries to make something negative out of nothing at all:

‘The latest workforce statistics show that more GPs than ever before are being paid a salary instead of earning their income as an independent contractor, in a sign of the strain facing the profession.’

From my lefty perspective on the NHs and other things, that looks like good news. We don’t want any more ‘independent contractors’ motivated by profit, do we?

2. Unsafe staffing pressures

On the 28th November, she told us that there were ‘unsafe’ staffing pressures on nurses, based only on a dodgy trade union survey, and despite Scotland having 50% more nurses than the UK figure:

https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2019/11/28/50-more-nurses-in-scotland-but-heralds-hobgoblin-correspondent-presents-trade-unions-dodgy-research-to-help-tories-as-election-looms/

3. Older GPs quitting

In October she claimed that ‘half of older doctors were planning to quit’ yet only 167 out of 8 000 did in 2017-2018 and that was down from 185 the previous year:

https://www.gov.scot/publications/foi-19-00620/

And McCardle seems to have missed this:

Scottish GP headcount climbs for 3rd quarter in a row, is younger and more numerous than in England

https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com/2019/12/03/scottish-gp-headcount-climbs-for-3rd-quarter-in-a-row-is-younger-and-more-numerous-than-in-england/

Norovirus infection rates have soared across the UK except in Scotland, so First Minister why have YOU not been able to increase Norovirus infection levels after 12 years in power?

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From the BBC yesterday:

Hospitals in England closed more than 1,100 beds in the past week because of the winter vomiting bug norovirus. Data shows higher than average levels of norovirus in November. One of the most common stomach bugs in the UK, it can be spread very easily in the community.

In the 19th paragraph:

Wales and Northern Ireland have also seen an increase in vomiting and diarrhoea or flu-like illnesses over the last few weeks, particularly in schools and care homes.

In the 23rd and last paragraph:

In Scotland, there has been no increase in norovirus cases in hospitals so far this winter.’

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-50673491

Hmm are Scottish hospitals cleaner? Should Jeanne Freeman resign?

Patients with mental illnesses are left languishing for months on hidden waiting lists in England but no heads need roll

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First Minister, after 12 years in power, why have YOU not been able to leave mental patients languishing for months?

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This extended BBC report at 6 and on the website had not a word of blame for Health Secretary Hancock nor for any politician at all yet in Scotland two days ago, ONLY the SNP are to be blamed and all of the opposition parties are to invited to blame them:

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Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton reiterated demands for increased investment and called for the Scottish Government to publish its overdue integrated workforce plan, setting out how it intends to meet the NHS’s staffing needs.

He said: “Just last week the government denied there was a mental health crisis. Today, the length of time children and young people are waiting for treatment is the worst on record. Performance has plummeted.

“The SNP government is failing a generation of young people and the consequences of their waiting up to two years for treatment are heart-breaking. Problems that start small are becoming crises as help arrives too late.”

The Scottish Greens called for an urgent review of CAHMS.

Alison Johnstone MSP said: “When young people in distress cannot access treatment when they need it, something has gone terribly wrong.

“The Scottish Government needs to review this situation urgently and ensure services are getting the support they need to meet demand, or Scotland’s young people will continue to suffer.”

Scottish Labour’s health spokesperson Monica Lennon MSP said: “These new figures reveal what we already know – on access to mental health services, the SNP are failing Scotland’s young people.

“It’s just not good enough that in 2019 thousands of young people have waited over four months to be seen by specialist mental health services, and hundreds have had to wait over a year. 

“At a time when we know youth suicides have been increasing these figures should shame SNP ministers into action.”

Scottish Conservative mental health spokeswoman Annie Wells said: “This is yet another appalling failure from an SNP government that’s been distracted by issues elsewhere.

“Ensuring our young people have access to thorough and prompt mental health treatment should be a priority for this nationalist government.

“Instead, it spends all its time grandstanding and trying to break up the UK.”

https://www.holyrood.com/news/view,fewer-children-treated-within-mental-health-waiting-time-target_14817.htm

Leading fishing company owner backs SNP!

Klondyke’s Carousel 2

Ludo Thierry

Hi John – Newsnet.Scotland carrying some useful associated info today – Good to see such a respected business figure in the fishing industry cut through all the britnat media spin and come out to publicly back SNP policy (and that the P+J carry the story). Also useful info re. quadrupling of sales value of nephrops catch over a 4 year period. Link and snippets below:

https://newsnet.scot/news-analysis/fishing-industry-boss-backs-snp-at-general-election/

William Tait snr of Fraserburgh-based Klondyke Fishing Company called on fishermen to now back the SNP at the general election on 12th December according to a report in the Press & Journal.

In 2013 the combined value of North Sea and West Coast Nephrops landings amounted to £18,185,000. In 2017 combined landings had risen to £72,393,000. Within just 4 years the value of Scottish Nephrops landed quadrupled in value.

The market for Nephrops is Europe, and small fishermen rely on this market to earn a living. Any interruption in getting their product to market will have devastating consequences, on top of which, UK fishing businesses outside the Single Market will be required to provide paperwork and veterinary certificates for every catch sold at market or bought by one of the main processors.

Trains, trains and more trains but BBC Scotland grudging

Why the ”? Can’t they be trusted?

Ludo Thierry

Beeb Scotland is carrying the Scotrail improved timetable story – but – in this reader’s view – NOT offering the story the same sort of prominence that we routinely see with their more frequent ‘Scotrail Are Rubbish’ (and Scotland by extension is also rubbish) pieces.

Anyway – In view of the major improvements Scotrail has announced (including opening the NEW station at Robroyston) it is clear that HUMZA MUST GO!. Link and snippets below:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-50652437

ScotRail has vowed that the latest changes to timetables across the country will add 10,000 extra seats for passengers each day.

The improvements, which include a new station at Robroyston in the north of Glasgow, take effect on 15 December.

Among the key differences is a sharp rise in services in the north east and more carriages on busy commuter lines in the central belt and Fife.

ScotRail said the changes, which include 1,500 more seats on the Borders Railway and extra seats between Edinburgh and Glasgow, will have a positive impact.

The operator said a new timetable between Inverurie, Dyce and Aberdeen would provide more than 50% more services.

The route between Edinburgh and Glasgow via Falkirk High will now have eight carriages for every peak service.

ScotRail claims there are more than 2,400 trains running every weekday, an increase of 9% from 10 years ago.

Further timetable improvements will be delivered in May and December 2020.

(NOTE the illuminating wording applied “..Scottrail CLAIMS there are more than 2,400 trains running every weekday…an increase of 9% from 10 yrs ago (ie under SNP Scottish Govt stewardship period) – Either there are the stats to back this up or there aren’t – So why frame it as “..Scotrail CLAIMS..”? – Beeb just can’t help themselves, can they?).

Scotland only UK nation where the alcohol-related death rate dropped this century

Ludo Thierry

Hi all. Beeb Scotland did carry this piece reporting ONS figures on the very encouraging drop in alcohol related death rates in Scotland this century – but it was a case of ‘blink and you missed it’. I’d noticed it yesterday early evening and had to search hard for it today by lunchtime! Link and snippets below:

Death rates caused by alcohol have dropped in Scotland in the past 10 years, according to new figures.

Scotland is the only UK nation where the rate dropped this century, despite a slight increase for women last year.

However, the Office of National Statistics said it was still twice that of England, where death rates rose.

Charities said it gave cause for optimism that minimum unit pricing was working, but warned that further action was needed to curb alcohol harm.

The Scottish government introduced minimum unit pricing in May 2018 in a bid to cut consumption and save lives.

The new report said: “Despite Scotland’s higher rate of alcohol-specific deaths, it remains the only UK constituent country to show statistically significant improvement when comparing with 2001 rates.

“In comparison, both England and Wales had statistically significant increases over the same period.”

For men, the alcohol-specific death rate has decreased in Scotland by 25% this century, while for women the rate has fallen by 10% over the same period.

There were 29.4 deaths per 100,000 men in Scotland last year, down from 37.6 in 2008. The lowest UK rate was in England where there were 14.8 male deaths per 100,000.

For women, the rate rose to 13.1 per 100,000 from 11.6 in 2017, but was still significantly lower than the 15.2 rate in 2008.

Alison Douglas, chief executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland, said: “Data published earlier this year showed that consumption in Scotland reduced by 3% in 2018.

“This gives us cause for optimism that minimum unit pricing appears to be having an effect on how much we are drinking and this should translate into improvements in health and wellbeing and fewer deaths.”

A report published earlier this year showed that sales of alcohol in Scotland dropped following the change in the law.

(Looking at those figures one can see precisely why the SNP Scottish Govt stuck to their guns and pushed through the raft of reforms to alcohol policy – in the face of MASSIVE political resistance from the britnat parties and britnat media – Truly these britnat poodles are living with a very strange (and damaging) political worldview).

First Minister praised

Ludo Thierry

Hi all – This beeb article which gives favourable mention to First Minister Nicola Sturgeon (and, positively, brackets Nicola with 2 other national leaders – those of Iceland and New Zealand) was cunningly positioned in the beeb Science pages! – If the story did appear on the beeb Scotland pages then I certainly missed it – and so must a heck of a lot of us). Beeb Science webpage comes up trumps again. Link and snippets below:

Iceland’s prime minister has urged governments to adopt green and family-friendly priorities, instead of just focusing on economic growth figures.

Katrin Jakobsdottir has teamed up with Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and New Zealand’s PM Jacinda Ardern to promote a “well-being” agenda.

Ms Jakobsdottir called for “an alternative future based on well-being and inclusive growth”.

She said new social indicators were needed besides traditional GDP data.

GDP’s focus on economic performance means it tends to undervalue quality of life and the social damage caused by inequality.

Ms Jakobsdottir said an Icelandic poet had joked that “having sex with your wife doesn’t count in GDP, but with a prostitute it does”.

While acknowledging Iceland’s progress in family-friendly policies, she said her nation – with a population of just 350,000 – still had big challenges, such as improving public transport and tackling depression.

“Iceland uses more anti-depressants than neighbouring countries,” she said. “We need to strengthen prevention [of depression], through sports and the arts.”

In a TED talk in August, Scotland’s Nicola Sturgeon made a similar plea for modern economies to put more resources into mental health, childcare and parental leave, and green energy.

She said the “well-being” initiative promoted by herself, Ms Sturgeon and Ms Ardern should not be seen as a gender-based backlash against populism.

“It’s very important to have all genders at the table – it affects the way you think, and then different decisions are made,” she said.

Scottish private schools to pay their way

(c) Fettes

Ludo Thierry

Another (sensible and socially just) brick was, today, cemented in place in the edifice of the New and Better Scotland we are, together, building. Get out there and vote SNP folks, bring that better future another step closer still. Link and snippets below:

Private schools are to have their charitable status removed and be made to pay business rates, the Scottish government has confirmed.

The announcement means the schools will no longer get relief of up to 20% on their bills for non-domestic rates.

The change, recommended three years ago, will come into effect on 1 September next year.

There are 51 private schools in Scotland, including famous institutions like Gordonstoun and Fettes.

Inclusion of fee-paying schools in non-domestic rate payments was recommended in the Barclay Review.

Public finance minister Kate Forbes confirmed the new law would be incorporated into the Non-Domestic Rates (Scotland) Bill, currently in its second stage.

Under the legislation, schools would lose their charity relief unless they were responsible for teaching children with additional support needs.

Andrew Neil hard to stomach as he LIES shamelessly on hospital deaths

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Shout, interrupt, condescend, be selective and shout again!

‘Children are dying in a new Glasgow hospital BECAUSE the water’s contaminated perhaps by pigeon droppings.’

In a tirade of interruptive distortions and inaccuracy, the above claim stood out for me as best representing the malice of the corpulent long-tied Neil. I’m guessing expensive private health-care, funded by licence-payers is keeping that ‘body’ alive.

Children ARE dying in Glasgow hospitals, but NONE have had their deaths caused by water-born infections. They have died sadly BECAUSE OF prematurity, cancer and other conditions. No competent medic has claimed otherwise. Only ambulance-chasing ‘journalists’ posing as health correspondents, at BBC Scotland and at the Herald, have sought to do so, with the sneaky use of words such as ‘after’.

I’ll complain, again.

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