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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-03119: David Stewart (Highlands and Islands)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 22 September 2016

To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to encourage newly trained GPs to relocate to NHS (a) Shetland, (b) Orkney and (c) Western Isles.

Answered by: Shona Robison 6 October 2016

The Scottish Government is fully committed to supporting primary care, including GPs, and ensuring that all communities in Scotland, including remote and rural, receive safe, reliable and sustainable health care services.

Over three years, the Scottish Government is investing £85 million, as part of the Primary Care Fund. As part of this, over £2 million will be invested in work to explore with key stakeholders the issues surrounding GP recruitment and retention which can be particularly challenging in remote and rural areas. This will support a range of initiatives over the next two years including the establishment of a Scottish Rural Medicine Collaborative in seven health boards. This initiative will bring together recruitment strategies and support networks for GPs working in remote and rural areas.

Since 11 February 2016, the Scottish Government has also updated the Directions around the Golden Hello scheme which incentivises GPs to work in rural areas.