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Minister intervenes at NHS Tayside after finance concerns

Serious concerns were raised over how NHS Tayside was using charitable donations.

Intervention: Shona Robison has stepped in at NHS Tayside.
Intervention: Shona Robison has stepped in at NHS Tayside. PA

Health Secretary Shona Robison has announced that she will be intervening in the management of NHS Tayside after serious concerns were raised over how its finances were being handled.

NHS Tayside was discovered to have used millions of pounds of charity donations to cover running costs, after money set aside for other projects was used to "balance the books".

It is believed some of the funds, that were supposed to be used for patient comforts such as children's toys, was spent on a new IT system.

Robison has stepped in to "strengthen the leadership with immediate effect".

In a statement, the health secretary said: "Issues over past few weeks have laid bare the extent of the problems facing NHS Tayside and the minutes of a meeting of Trustees in 2014 outline, in detail, the approval of the use of endowment funds by the Chief Executive.

"It has become clear to me that the current structure of the Board cannot deliver the improvements required to return to a sustainable position, while continuing to deliver safe and effective services to patients.

"In particular, I have concerns about the overall management of the Board's finances and the ability of leadership to carry through the change required to bring the Board back into financial balance.

"As such, I will be exercising Ministerial powers of intervention and moving NHS Tayside to the highest level of escalation and I have instructed the Chief Executive of NHS Scotland to strengthen the leadership of NHS Tayside with immediate effect.

"It is imperative that all Boards use charitable donations for the purposes of which they were given.

"At my request, the Chief Executive of NHS Scotland has written to every NHS Board Chair seeking assurance that endowment monies are being spent for the correct purposes.

"We are also engaging directly with OSCR on this issue."

https://stv.tv/news/politics/1411744-health-secretary-urged-to-investigate-nhs-funding/ | default

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