Writing in today’s Scotsman, Liberal Democrat MSP for Shetland lists a number of mistakes made by the SNP Government in Scotland. The one most in the news at the moment is Audit Scotland’s report and concerns about the number of people marked socially unavailable for treatment which enabled them to be removed from the waiting times target.
On that scandal, Tavish said:
It is now clear that health boards across Scotland were under enormous government pressure to meet waiting list targets. In 2007, the new health secretary declared that she would end the previous government’s waiting-time fiddle. Nicola Sturgeon did. The SNP replaced one fiddle with another. NHS boards were told to deliver on waiting time targets or else. The NHS was put under huge pressure to remove patients from a list when the target was about to be missed. Sturgeon could not afford to have her flagship policy breached in the run up to the 2011 Scottish General Election. Patients the length of Scotland now know they were classed as socially unavailable for treatment. In most cases, they were not asked. Their treatment was secondary to hitting an SNP target.
He lists other instances where the SNP blame the UK Government for its own failings from capital investment to horsemeat and concludes, that the SNP’s reputation for competence is no longer valid:
Finally, the SNP has managed to remove Raasay crofters’ sporting and fishing rights. The Scottish Government now reminds crofters of the most rapacious landlord. This decision was taken, as all are, in Edinburgh. Competence and the SNP? These words are no longer better together.
* Caron Lindsay is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings