Tue 5 Dec, 2017

We are simply not training enough doctors in Scotland to staff our health service in the long term. Alison Johnstone MSP

Alison Johnstone MSP, Health spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (5 Dec) called for greater access to medical training after new figures showed a sharp rise in vacancies for hospital consultants, with more than 250 posts lying empty for at least six months.

Alison said:

"It is alarming that the number of vacant consultant posts have increased by 11 per cent in the last year, and almost 60 per cent of all consultant vacancies have been vacant for more than six months.  This puts intolerable pressure on existing clinical staff and risks compromising high quality care for patients. Added to that, many European doctors who have made their home in Scotland are considering leaving because of the Tories’ Brexit disaster.

"Coupled with serious staff shortages in general practice, it is clear that medical recruitment is just not keeping pace with patients' needs.  We are simply not training enough doctors in Scotland to staff our health service in the long term.  I believe we must take significant action to increase the number of training places in medical schools at Scottish Universities, and open up access to the medical profession to students from a wider range of backgrounds.  

"Last year, researchers from Dundee University found that the vast majority of students at Scotland's medical schools in previous years come from the most privileged backgrounds: 86 per cent had parents in the highest earning professions, while less than 5 per cent came from the least affluent 20 per cent of post codes in the country.  We simply can't afford to exclude talented students from less affluent families from medical training while we are so desperately short of GPs and consultants in Scotland." 


Get involved

More like this

Mesh implant report let down survivors says Green MSP

Tue 5 Dec, 2017

The findings of a report into the scandal of women being forced to live in severe and constant pain because of transvaginal mesh implants must be looked at again a Green MSP will say today.

Alison Johnstone MSP, the Scottish Greens’ health spokesperson, also says the recommendations do not give sufficient clarity to ministers, MSPs and the Scottish Mesh Survivors – the group behind the Hear Our Voice campaign.

Lothian MSP Alison Johnstone said:

Minimum pricing: Green MSP slams failed bid by drinks lobby

Wed 15 Nov, 2017

The Scottish Greens have welcomed a decision by the UK Supreme Court to reject the challenge by the Scotch Whisky Association for there to be a minimum price for alcohol set in Scotland.

Green health spokesperson Alison Johnstone MSP says the alcohol companies behind the failed block should be “ashamed of themselves” and called on ministers to now get on with putting the policy in place.

Lothian MSP Alison Johnstone said:

Funding proposal for GP practices welcomed by Greens

Mon 13 Nov, 2017

A new funding formula proposed by the BMA,  aimed at providing more money for GP practices in deprived areas, has been welcomed by the Greens.

The formula is one of several new measures in a proposed new contract for general practice in Scotland and Alison Johnstone MSP, health spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, says her party has been campaigning on the issue for some time, highlighting how GP practices in more deprived areas currently receive only £2.28 more per patient.