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Scotland’s NHS – beyond 2020

Health Secretary sets out inclusive process to shape long term future of NHS.

The Scottish Government is to ask patients and staff to help shape a refreshed long-term vision for Scotland’s NHS.

Speaking in a debate in Parliament, the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Shona Robison, reaffirmed her commitment to the Scottish Government’s 2020 Vision – which focuses on preventative healthcare and shifting more care into the community.

Ms Robison said the Scottish Government will produce a refreshed plan to reach the 2020 Vision and extended an invite to all politicians, as well as patients, families, clinicians and other stakeholders to work with the Government to develop a longer term 10 to 15 year plan for the NHS.

During the debate, the Cabinet Secretary also provided more details on the £100 million invested by the Scottish Government to tackle delayed discharge – highlighting the significant action being taken to support the NHS as the system moves towards full integration of health and social care.

She said:

“We need an approach to health in Scotland that fits the 21st century. We have the 2020 Vision. That vision – with its emphasis on new models of care, on healthcare delivered closer to home, on prevention – remains the right one.

“We need to be clearer on how we are going to deliver that vision and the changes that are required to get us there. We also need to raise our eyes beyond that horizon and look at what success would look like over a 10 and 15 year longer timeframe.

“In doing so I want to work with stakeholders, including patients and families, professionals and clinicians of all stripes, the Health and Sport Committee and opposition parties.

“I want to try and reach as much consensus around what we want our Health and Social care systems to look like over those longer time frames and the steps we need to take to get there.

“This will include planning what capacity is required where and what the workforce will need to look like to deliver these new services in a different way, so the role of the professional bodies and the Royal colleges will be key to informing that work.

“That engagement will be on-going but I would like to have reached broad agreement on this plan by the autumn of this year.”

The Health Secretary also outlined more detail on how the £100m funding to address delayed discharge, announced on Tuesday, will be used to support the objectives of health and social care integration. This follows agreement with COSLA that the NHS and local authorities will work to discharge the majority of patients within 72 hours of being clinically ready for discharge.

Ms Robison said: “I have agreed with COSLA that we will expect to see this new money deliver key integration outcomes that take us closer to the 2020 Vision and which are best represented by indicators relating to emergency admissions for adults, readmissions to hospital, quality of social care services and delayed discharge.

“This signifies a genuinely new relationship between Scottish Government and local health and social partnerships to help improve services for people across Scotland.”

Notes To Editors

Further information on the Scottish Government’s 2020 Vision is available on the website:


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