Hospital stable again after cancelled procedures

NHS Grampian bosses have said the Aberdeen Royal Infirmary (ARI) is back “on an even keel” after having to cancel nearly 20 non-urgent operations two weeks ago.

The health board had been forced to postpone the procedures a fortnight ago because it was the only way to ensure that emergency services were not affected.

An NHS spokeswoman said the situation was improving and that more staff were being hired to deal with the issue.

She said: “Hospital services do experience unexpected peaks in demand at various points throughout the year and postponing non urgent, elective procedures is one way that we are able to safely ensure emergency capacity remains unaffected.

“It is not a decision that we take lightly however and we would like to apologise to any patients whose procedures had to be re-scheduled.

“The safety of our patients and staff is paramount.

“It is no secret that over the winter we experienced challenges around theatre capacity partly linked to a shortage of theatre nurses.

“Since the start of the year, the number of available theatre operating hours available has improved at both ARI and Woodend.

“We recently recruited seven newly qualified practitioners who are now participating in the rota and further interviews will take place this month.”

However the NHS could not confirm whether the people who had procedures cancelled have had them rescheduled.