65 people in Fife died last year waiting on a social care package

65 people in Fife died last year while waiting on a social care package

65 people in Fife died last year while waiting on a social care package

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Sixty-five people died in Fife last year waiting for social care packages, according to shocking new figures.

The statistics have been revealed by Kirkcaldy MND patient and campaigner Gordon Aikman who has called for the Scottish Government to take urgent action to resolve a ‘cruel crisis’ in social care caused by cuts to council budgets.

Mr Aikman, who has been tirelessly raising money for MND research and campaigning for better patient care, sent Freedom of Information requests to Scotland’s 32 councils. There were 26 replies, including Fife, revealing that at least 276 people died in Scotland last year while waiting for care to be organised.

The information from Fife Council revealed the number of people in the Kingdom awaiting the start of a social care package on November 2 last year was 135. The longest number of days an individual in Fife had been waiting for a care package to start was 174 days.

Mr Aikman, founder of GordonsFightback.com, was diagnosed with MND in June 2014.

He said: “Vulnerable folk across Fife are being let down. Too many people in Fife are waiting too long for the help they need. Behind these figures are real people with stories of desperation, misery and indignity.”

Health secretary Shona Robison said the Government would continue to work hard with councils to improve provision and that an additional quarter of a billion pounds’ investment in social care is to be contained in next year’s budget.