A Scottish health board is spending over £1m a year on two locum consultants, a tribunal has heard.

NHS Western Isles is splashing out nearly £1.2m for a pair of senior psychiatrists, according to figures presented at the tribunal. This is an increase of £100,000 on the previous year.

Labour said “questions must be asked about how the SNP government has allowed NHS Western Isles to go so unsupported in terms of specialist staff.”

The Lib Dems urged the Scottish Government “to end its shambolic approach to workforce planning and increase the number of consultant psychiatrists in training to plug these gaps.”

The tribunal heard that locums can cost the health service £600,000 a year. This is much more than the £200,000 for employing a consultant psychiatrist in a permanent position.

The health board said it struggles to fill the positions with permanent doctors and that overspending on temporary staff has an impact on other patients’ care.

Want to see more SNP fails? – Transport Matters

Sign up to receive our weekly newsletter and join the fightback against Scottish Nationalism.