OUTSOURCING of radiology amid staff shortages in Scotland’s health service has been branded a “scandal” by Labour, as it is revealed the bill has topped £46 million.

Information released to the party under freedom of information legislation shows the use of private firms for the service has ballooned in recent years from £6.9m in 2018-19 to £12.2m last year — a growth of 78 per cent.

The figure point to a consistent rise in the use of private firms over the last decade, with the Royal College of Radiologists (RCR) estimating the cost at £3.5m in 2013-14.

The latest revelations on the costs of outsourcing come after years of RCR campaigning on staff shortages in the service, warning in 2018 that patients were being “increasingly adversely impacted by radiology workforce shortages” and services “buckling because there are simply not enough radiologists to sustain current provision.”

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