Banffshire & Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has submitted his response to the review of Minor Injuries Units which closes tomorrow (Wednesday, April 4).
Aberdeenshire Health and Social Care Partnership initiated the review in December 2017 which aims to take into account “location, demand and activity, practitioner competency and ongoing sustainability”.
In his submission, Mr Stevenson says: “The geographic nature of my constituency and indeed Aberdeenshire as a whole is very much rural, and localised medical treatment is an issue of importance for many of my constituents.
“I am aware that some of the services provided in Chalmers Hospital for example, such as the availability of expert radiographers and the provision of specific blood tests to identify blood clots or heart attacks, help to reduce acute admissions to care providers in Aberdeen and Elgin many of which would require ambulance transport.
“As you will appreciate there are numerous challenges faced by local GP practices in terms of recruitment and the rural nature of the community results in additional pressure on the ambulance service. I am concerned that any diminution in the service provided by local Minor Injury Units could lead to unnecessary demands on the ambulance service or local GPs.”
Mr Stevenson said: “While it is right that provision of any public service is reviewed from time to time to see how it may be improved, it seems clear from the feedback I have received from constituents that these services are greatly valued in their communities and any reduction in service would have knock-on effects, not only potentially to local GPs and the ambulance service, but to patients themselves who may be faced with longer journeys for minor injuries.
“For some people, that will not be sustainable and may simply increase pressure on the health service elsewhere.”