Nearly one million (894,475) out of hours (OOH) appointments were carried out in Scotland last year, new research shows.
The statistics, published for the first time by the Information Services Division (ISD) Scotland, will help to inform the National Review of GP out of hours services, which is expected to report its recommendations to the Scottish Government in the autumn.
The review team visited every health board area in Scotland in order to better understand issues such as working across remote and rural areas, as well as the recruitment and retention of GPs, staff availability, consistency of service and public expectations.
Reflecting on the statistics, health secretary Shona Robison said: “Access to urgent primary medical services outside normal GP surgery hours is a fundamental part of unscheduled care in Scotland. The statistics released today show, for the first time, the key role GP out-of-hours services play in Scotland, with nearly 900,000 patients seen and almost one million consultations carried out last year.
“This new statistical publication by ISD Scotland is to be welcomed and provides a fuller picture of the activity of GP out-of-hours services,” she added.