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As Winter 2019/20 didn’t really bite that much, there was nevertheless widespread chaos across three NHS regions. Strikes by nurses and ‘winter pressures’ caused mass cancellations and abysmal A&E statistics in Northern Ireland and Wales. In England, despite attempts to conceal the awful truth, A&E performance was at ‘third-world’ level in some areas. On average, only 68% were seen in A&E within 4 hours compared to 81% in Scotland. Operation cancellations due to non-clinical reasons in Scotland increased from 2 to 2.4% in Scotland while ALL operations were cancelled in parts of Wales. Yet none of the BBC reports from these areas gave space to opposition politicians to exploit human suffering by blaming government.

Only BBC Scotland, allowed this kind of thing:

Miles Briggs, Scottish Conservative health spokesman, said: “It is utterly unacceptable that almost 1,000 people waited in A&E for over 12 hours last month, most likely in fear and pain. “Hospital staff are clearly unable to cope and the result on morale is devastating.”

It’s worth noting that these 987 patients represent only 0.7% of the 141 868 who attended. To my mind it’s utterly unacceptable that such rants are reported. Is there any evidence of an empirical nature of significant increases in patients in fear and pain or of staff with devastated morale levels? No, there isn’t.

BBC Scotland News is in coalition with the opposition parties to weaken the SNP government by any means, no matter how slimy.