NHS FIFE has strengthened its resources to address Fife's flu jab vaccine backlog amid an "unprecedented volume of calls" received by the health board.

The Press reported earlier this month that 75,000 over-65s contacted NHS Fife after they all received letters on the same day telling them to book their vaccination.

Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Alex Rowley told the Press that constituents remained in regular contact with him about their troubles in scheduling a date for their jab.

He said: "I am afraid that I am still getting lots of people contacting me saying they are having difficulty getting an appointment.

"The whole thing has been so poorly thought-through and organised that it is chaotic.

"It is crucial that the issues are resolved and I am appealing to NHS Fife to learn the lesions quick because, on their performance, what hope would there be for a mass programme of vaccines if one can be found for COVID?

"I do not understand why they did not make the arrangements through the pharmacies and I am asking for a review that includes looking at the best ways to deliver vaccines for the people of Fife.

"NHS Fife has failed badly and they must review and understand what went wrong so it does not happen again."

Patients have struggled to get through on the phone, been cut off, had to leave a message or were instructed to go to a non-local venue which, for some, including those in Kelty, would have meant two bus journeys.

Mr Rowley spoke at First Minister's Questions recently and his concerns have been addressed by Health Minister Jeane Freeman.

In a letter to him, she said: "I'm aware of the unprecedented volume of calls received by Fife Health Board and I have been informed NHS Fife have deployed additional resource to address this and work through any short-term backlog.

"This includes increasing the number of call-handlers and providing additional staff to respond to emails and text messages.

"The vaccination programme is being delivered in a network of community venues across the Kingdom.

"Moving to larger venues is essential to ensure that the appropriate physical distancing and infection prevention measures can be put in place.

"A network of cluster clinics, vaccination hubs and community pharmacies across Fife is in place to deliver many thousands of vaccinations over the coming weeks and months.

"The board has also put key performance indicators in place to monitor progress and allow for effective planning, to ensure resources meet anticipated demand.

"NHS Fife has taken steps to make vaccination clinics and hubs as accessible as possible, with people aged 65 and over being offered an appointment at their nearest cluster clinic with the option of using an immunisation hub if this is closer to home."