NHS Grampian miss a raft of waiting time targets for cancer and alcohol & drug treatment

Cash strapped NHS Grampian failed to meet national standards for patients waiting for vital cancer treatment and alcohol & drug treatment in the final quarter of 2018, according to figures publishes by MHS Scotland’s Information Services Division (ISD) today.   

Our local health board had the second worst record for treatment within the ‘31 day standard’, from decision to treat to first cancer treatment, with nearly 10% of patients failing to be seen on time.

All regional health boards, except one, failed to meet the ‘61 day standard’, from urgent referral to first treatment, with only four of every five NHS Grampian patients receiving treatment within the deadline. Some of the worst result for any health board in Scotland.  

NHS Grampian was also one of three boards in Scotland to fail to deliver 90% treatment targets, within three weeks, for patients suffering from alcohol and drug addiction.

North east Liberal Democrat MSP Mike Rumbles said: “Every week we learn of more deadlines being missed by NHS Grampian and hundreds of patients waiting for life saving treatment.

“It is vital to act quickly to have a chance of treating cancer successfully. So it is astonishing that the Scottish Government is content to sit back while our local health board struggles to deliver even the minimum standard of care that other patients across Scotland receive.

“Over the past decade, NHS Grampian has been underfunded by £239 million by the Scottish Government. The impact of that and the lack of proper resources is plain for everyone to see. It is appalling that but the health minister has refused to lift a finger to help.”


Notes for editors:


  • Find the full ISD report on cancer treatment waiting times here


  • Find the full ISD report on alcohol and drug treatment waiting times at: here


  • Data provided by the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe):

NHS Grampian allocation compared with NRAC target allocation


Actual allocation £m

NRAC target allocation £m

Distance from parity £m





























2016-17 (a)




2017-18 (a)




2018-19 (a)




2019-20 (a)





(a)  allocations for 2016-17 to 2018-19 are revised to remove funding streams that are

(b)  not allocated on an NRAC basis

The total distance from parity over the whole period shown is £239.2m.

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