Page last updated at 16:39 GMT, Monday, 3 December 2012

Topical questions - 4 December 2012

MSPs questioned Health Secretary Alex Neil and Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill during topical question time on 4 December 2012.

Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser asked Mr Neil what the Scottish government was doing to ensure that NHS boards did not manipulate waiting time figures in order to meet targets.

The health secretary said "To ensure that all NHS boards are fully applying with waiting time guidance the Scottish government instructed all NHS boards earlier this year to undertake an extensive internal audit of their waiting time practice.

"We expect these audits to be completed and published by the end of the year".

Mr Neil said "To date, only two boards out of 14 have identified problems, namely Lothian and Tayside.

"However, I will wait until I receive all 14 ordered reports from the health boards before rushing to judgment."

Labour MSP Lewis Macdonald asked Mr MacAskill how many people appeared in court without legal representation on 3 December 2012 as a result of protest action by defence solicitors in Aberdeen, Forfar, Arbroath, Dundee, Perth, Alloa, Falkirk and Dunfermline.


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