Health services across Ayrshire and Arran remain under extreme pressure, with patients still having to wait lengthy spells for treatment.

The news was revealed at a meeting of NHS Ayrshire and Arran’s board.

Cases of Covid-19 are in decline, with just 38 patients positive as of Tuesday, May 2.

Elsewhere, there was good news in the total number of patients waiting for a new outpatient appointment falling from a high of 45,156 last September to 43,479 in March, although there has been a slight increase between February and March.

However, outpatient appointments are still a source of concern.

The waiting times target to eliminate long waits for a new outpatient appointment set a challenge of no patients waiting over a year in most areas by March.

But, as of the week beginning Monday, March 27, some 3,271 patients were waiting over 12 months, with no waits in eight specialties.

The 12-week new outpatient compliance reached a 20-month high of 42 per cent in March, but remains well short of the 95 per cent target.

The total waiting list for inpatients/day cases continues to gradually fall from a high of 8,577 in May 2022 to 8,002 in March.

By September, health chiefs want no patients to be waiting more than 18 months for treatment.

However as of April 15, some 908 patients were waiting more than 18 months which is up from 776 in December.

Compliance levels against the 109 per cent target for completed inpatient waits have been falling since January, with levels of 51.7 per cent reported in March.

The 18-week Referral to Treatment (RTT) compliance has reduced from a six-month high of 65.9 per cent in December to 58.6 per cent in February.

This is the lowest recorded position and the first time performance has fallen below 60 per cent against a target of 90 per cent.