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McInnes questions why health ministers will avoid a third of Scotland in reviews

August 31, 2011 12:18 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Responding to formal notice that SNP health ministers will break the tradition of personal attendance at health board annual review meetings, Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alison McInnes MSP said:

"Given the real problems in the way the NHS is able to deliver ministers' election promises it is astonishing that ministers have chosen to bypass the health boards who serve a third of Scots this year.

"We have seen in statistics this week that up to 500 nursing posts have been scrapped this year. We have discovered that health boards do not collect the waiting times information for a quarter of their patients.

"Surely those are two good reasons for ministers to face the boards? Perhaps ministers are keen to avoid being asked tough questions about why their health promises don't seem to add up."

Notes

MSPs have been notified this week by the Scottish Government that "Unlike previous years a decision has been made that ministers will not attend all [health board] annual review meetings personally."

Ministers will avoid meetings for Lothians, Tayside, Borders, Shetland, Western Isles and Ayrshire & Arran. Together these serve 1.7 million people, a third of Scots.