Scotland does have less hospital beds than it had before. This is the planned result of changes to way patients are treated to reduce the risks of hospitalisation for those who can be treated in the community.
From the Kings Fund in 2020 but of course missed by the SUN:
Most other advanced health care systems have also reduced bed numbers in recent years. However, the UK has fewer acute beds relative to its population than many comparable health systems.https://www.kingsfund.org.uk/publications/nhs-hospital-bed-numbers
The Kings Fund report lumps Scotland in with the UK but that’s deceptive. See this, also from 2020:
Scotland has a hospital bed for every 265 people whereas England only has one for every 413. If there are bed shortages in Scotland and the graph below suggests not, then they are nearly twice as bad in England.
Admissions as of the end of October, are less than a third of the peak in April 2022, ICU cases, in single figures, are at less than one-sixth of the peak in November 2021 and, notably, at less than half the rate in England.
So, that’s beds, what about staff?
Astonishingly, NHS Scotland has 50% more nurses than NHS England. Could the Scottish Government have played any part in this?
Perhaps they’re all off sick? Nope. The absence rate among NHS Scotland nurses and midwives has fallen again in week-ending 21st September to just over half that at the most recent peak in January 2021: https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-trends-in-daily-data/
Consultants, GPs? Yes more of them too.