New cancer care waiting times figures

The Macmillan Cancer Centre at Borders General Hospital.
The Macmillan Cancer Centre at Borders General Hospital.

Latest cancer waiting time figures show that NHS Borders is one of the best performing health boards in Scotland.

NHS Borders exceeded the national 31-day treatment waiting time target of 95%, with 100% of its patients receiving their first cancer treatment within the time period from October to December last year. During the same period the health board met the 62-day referral to treatment waiting time target in 94.7% of cases, just below the target rate of 95% but above the national average of 82.7%.

Nicky Berry, NHS Borders’ director of Nursing, Midwifery and Acute Services, said: “Facing a cancer diagnosis is a difficult and frightening time, not only for our patients but also for their loved ones. Our staff work hard to minimise the time it takes to start treatment, which can relieve some of the anxiety that patients, their families and carers feel.

“NHS Borders maintains a strong position in the measurement of cancer waiting times, and we continue to focus on delivering a high level of performance in this area. This is testament to the hard work of our staff in providing high quality care for the people of the Borders. We would like to recognise their efforts and thank them.

“We remain committed to further improving our services by ensuring that delays with local patient care are highlighted so that we can address them in a timely manner.”

Borders MP John Lamont said: “For a long time now, NHS Borders has been very good at meeting its cancer treatment waiting times as well as targets for cancer screening, not least because of the Macmillan Centre at Borders General Hospital.

“While there is still room for improvement and the Scotland wide figures are disappointing, it is reassuring to know that cancer waiting times in the Borders are being prioritised. These waiting times exist because we know how important it is to treat cancer early.

“NHS Borders is clearly doing a lot of things right, which is why we need to ensure that best practice and good ideas are shared across Scotland.”