Crosshouse HOSPITAL was ranked Best in the UK for Accident and Emergency training in 2019.

Ayr came third in the UK as Scottish departments held three of the top five places.

The figures were revealed in a presentation to MSPs at the Scottish Parliament by Dr David Chung, a Consultant at the Royal College of Emergency Medicine.

Local MSP Kenneth Gibson said: “A & E training takes place in 21 Scottish hospitals and hundreds elsewhere in the UK, so for Crosshouse to come first is an accolade indeed.

“I am delighted that Ayrshire is top, not just in Scotland but across the UK. This is a tribute to the staff who work so hard and Dr Chung himself, who is based at Crosshouse and is Vice President of the RCEM.

The people of Ayrshire are safe in his hands and those of his staff.”

In 2018-19 there were 1,432,370 attendances at A & E departments in Scotland, an increase of 5.27% from the previous year.

Since June 2014, the SNP Government has boosted the number of A & E consultants by 46.5%.

Dr Chung said: “Last year 87.88% of A & E Patients were admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours. While this is below the 95% target, Scotland’s Emergency Departments continue to outperform the other UK nations, both in time to treat and patient outcomes at a time when patient numbers are rising dramatically.

“The average patient is now older and frailer than in previous years which presents its own care and treatment challenges. However, we are now in a situation that anyone trained in the West of Scotland is of such a high standard that they can walk into an Emergency Department anywhere in the world and be offered a job.

We have to continue working hard to ensure Scotland, rather than other countries, continue to benefit from such excellence.”