Scotland is facing a serious shortage of senior doctors in remote and rural areas, with many advertised vacancies for consultant posts receiving no applications at all.

Data compiled by the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (RCPE) showed 42 per cent of the 733 appointment panels held for consultant jobs in Scotland last year were cancelled.

The vast majority of these cancellations (88 per cent) were for reasons such as nobody applying for the job, nobody suitable applying or candidates withdrawing from the process.

The statistics showed that NHS boards serving remote and rural areas were the worst affected, with all six appointment panels due to be held in NHS Western Isles cancelled.

NHS Shetland cancelled four panels out of six, while NHS Highland cancelled 36 out of 57 and NHS Borders 12 out of 19.

The RCPE said the trend was particularly concerning as remote and rural NHS boards tended to have more consultant vacancies than in other parts of the country.

Want to see more SNP fails? – Economic Matters

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