The First Minister must step in urgently to fix the mess in the NHS as reports reveal the Royal Alexandra Hospital is facing crisis, local MSP Jackie Baillie has said.

Routine operations at the RAH have been cancelled while patients face waits of up to 20 hours at A&E. Some patients have been forced to travel to Inverclyde Hospital as the RAH struggled to cope with the demand.

Staff at the RAH told the Daily Record that exhausted doctors and nurses are “literally on their knees” and blamed bed cuts for the crisis.

The troubling scenes have been mirrored at hospitals across Scotland as the SNP Government’s underfunding of the NHS is putting A&E departments under intense pressure. Health Chiefs at NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde have already issued an apology to patients while the Scottish Government has been caught trying to stop health boards from revealing the truth about overwhelmed emergency departments.

Jackie said:

“People in Dumbarton, Vale of Leven and Helensburgh will be deeply concerned about the current crisis playing out at the RAH and in hospitals across Scotland.

“Every second counts in an emergency, and it is completely unacceptable that patients have been left waiting up to 20 hours at A&E.

“Our doctors and nurses are doing their best under very challenging circumstances but they have been badly let down by an SNP Government in Edinburgh which has ignored the warning signs. With patients being turned away and appointments cancelled, it’s clear that the NHS is facing huge problems and the SNP is missing in action

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