Hospital attendance still below pre-pandemic level so no bursting?

The Herald

Doctors? Who? How many? Using what facts?

Well just Dr John Thomson, a consultant in emergency medicine at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, so in just one hospital and using no published statistics, so worryingly for a professional using science in his line of work, keen to claim:

Hospitals are jammed. They’re absolutely full and bursting.

Dr T is a media regular, in the Herald and the Times, shouting alarm. In January, he was ‘voicing fears‘ in the Times. It’s a hobby he has.

Facts, Dr T?


During week ending 06 June 2021, there were 28,493 attendances at A&E services in NHS Scotland.

During week ending 09 June 2019, there were 28,029 attendances at A&E services in NHS Scotland.

Surgery? Theatres full to bursting?

Still well below 2019 capacity in planned ops (blue shading) and cancelled due to lack of resources (grey line) lower than in 2019.

‘Doctors express alarm?’ Nope. One doctor feeds scare story to starving churnalist at Herald.

The Herald

7 thoughts on “Hospital attendance still below pre-pandemic level so no bursting?

  1. They’re absolutely full and bursting”.

    That’ll be the Brit Nat papers, TV and radio, then.

    Full of mince, and bursting with “SNP-BAD” tales of woe!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. For info/interest, this is on an A&E performance matter that has been mentioned on numerous occasions here on TUS. It is taken from the Royal College of Emergency Medicine’s web site.

    In an article entitled ’Summer to Recover – Winter-proofing Urgent and Emergency Care for 2021’ we have this confirmed: “The 12-hour data as currently published in England, is from decision to admit the patient, which is a gross misrepresentation of the true scale of crowding and long waits in Emergency Departments.”

    The RCEM calls on NHS organisations across the UK to: “Commit to using the 12-hour data from time of arrival for all Emergency Departments to drive plans for winter.”



  3. Perspective – in the last week or so, the Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM) has published two articles on its website.

    Dated 17 June 2021: ‘As attendances soar performance plummets, putting patient safety at risk’. This a reference to A&E in Wales. It states:

    “Emergency Department performance figures published today by the Welsh Government for May 2021 show the highest number of attendances since the pandemic began, while four-hour performance is the SECOND LOWEST EVER RECORDED.” (my emphasis)

    “Four-hour performance is the SECOND LOWEST EVER RECORDED at 63.5% for May 2021, a decrease of 3.5 percentage points when compared to April 2021. And second only to December 2020 when it was 63%.”

    Dated 10 June, 2021: ‘As Emergency Departments become overwhelmed, patient safety is put at risk’. This is a reference to A&E in England.

    “Dr Katherine Henderson, President of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, said:

    “Emergency Departments are BECOMING OVERWHELMED. Across the country we are hearing that sites are reporting record breaking numbers of patients. The sheer volume is putting severe pressures on staff and departments, which are struggling to cope.

    “The pressures on Emergency Departments are paralleled in the ambulance service data which show that May 2021 saw the highest number of contacts ever recorded.

    “WE ARE IN REAL TROUBLE; the College has warned for months about the urgent need for a safe management of the exit from the pandemic. We desperately need action and leadership. If pressures continue to rise, patient safety will likely be put AT SERIOUS RISK.”

    The Vice Chair of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM) in Scotland is Dr John Thomson (Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, NHS Grampian), the source used in The Herald article referenced in today’s TUS post. As far as I can see, the RCEM has not published a piece on NHS Scotland comparable to those warning of current crises in Wales and England. Does Dr Thomson find the editors of The Herald more receptive to his views than his own professional association?

    Liked by 1 person

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