Lib Dems call for action on hospital beds

The Scottish Government must ensure there are enough NHS staffed beds available in acute specialities to meet demand, the Scottish Liberal Democrats have said.

The party's health spokesman Alex Cole-Hamilton raised concerns after official statistics showed the number of these beds available has fallen.

Figures published by ISD Scotland show there were on average 13,349 available staffed beds for all acute specialities in the quarter ending December 31, a drop of 1.6% on the same period the previous year.

Mr Cole-Hamilton said: "People will be worried that acute bed capacity has fallen again. Staff regularly tell me that there simply aren't enough beds.

"The SNP has failed when it comes to social care, mental health, primary care and delayed discharge, and as a result more work is piling up at hospitals' doors.

"While it's true models of care are changing, ministers must face up to their responsibilities and ensure that medical staff have the resources they need to get on with the job."