Nurses want more details of Scots NHS decisions

There is too little information publicly available on the NHS to ensure its decisions are in the best interests of patients, warns a report by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Scotland today.

In its report, Taking the Pulse of NHS Scotland, the RCN raises its concerns that NHS board reports are inconsistent, generally inaccessible and that they obscure what is happening, making it very difficult for the public and organisations to scrutinise what they do.

Theresa Fyffe, RCN Scotland's director, said: "We embarked on writing this report so we could understand what the tightening of public-sector spending might mean for patients, for NHS staff and for the people of Scotland.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"What we found was a dearth of information, with no reports or analysis bringing together Scottish NHS financial and workforce information."

Taking the Pulse of NHS Scotland puts forward some practical suggestions to address this lack of information, providing a snapshot of the NHS nursing and midwifery workforce and NHS finances.

"In our manifesto for the Scottish Parliament elections next year, we're calling for the financial plans and reports of health boards to be made public in a transparent and timely manner so that difficult funding choices can be fully understood and debated by employers, staff, patients, the public, politicians and the media," said Ms Fyffe.

"Taking the Pulse of NHS Scotland reinforces the need for an open and honest debate on how health services can be delivered with less money in the future."