Scotland invests £2.6 million in extended hours for practice nurses

New funding for practice nurses during evenings and weekends will divert cash from ‘more pressing health needs’, the BMA has said.

Scotland's public health minister Shona Robison told yesterday's NHS Scotland conference in Glasgow that practices would be able to bid for £2.65 million of funding to pay for practice nurses to work extended hours. ‘Nurses are a critical part of the care that practices provide,' she said.

But Dr Dean Marshall, GPC Scotland chairman, said the plan was ‘inappropriate', and had not been agreed with GPs. ‘Surely it would be more responsible to invest scarce NHS resources into tackling the health inequalities that exist in Scotland,' he said.

He added that the funding was unlikely to persuade nurses to work evenings and weekends. ‘Many of our staff work in general practice because the hours fit with their family commitments,' he said.

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