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UNISON is the UK’s largest health union. Over 400,000 members work for the NHS and for private contractors providing NHS services.

More than 60,000 UNISON members work in the NHS in Scotland. Our members working in the health service include nurses, student nurses, midwives, health visitors, healthcare assistants, paramedics, occupational therapists, cleaners, porters, catering staff, medical secretaries, clerical and admin staff and scientific and technical staff.

See also important information for workers registered with regulatory bodies.

How we organise – Standing up for Scotland’s health service workers

UNISON organisers and activists work together to make sure our members’ concerns are heard – whether it’s about pay, health and safety, discrimination or the future of our NHS.

UNISON represents our members working in health services in Scotland in many ways:

  • Offering help and advice at work;
  • Lobbying the Scottish Parliament and Scottish Government on issues our members care about;
  • Having a strong voice on the Scottish partnership organisations, which negotiate terms and conditions issues for NHS Scotland staff;
  • Raising our members professional/local concerns or by highlighting issues that will affect all health workers at a national level.
  • Standing up for Scotland’s health service

But as well as representing our members in the workplace – UNISON cares passionately about the future of the NHS as a publicly funded service that is free at the point of delivery. The NHS is a public service we can all be proud of, and UNISON wants to keep it that way.

Coronavirus latest

Winter preparedness – response to Health, Social Care & Sport Committee

This is UNISON Scotland's response to the Scottish Parliament's Health, Social Care and Sport Committee’s call for evidence[1] for the ... Read More

Briefing 130 – Consultation on Safe Staffing Statutory Guidance

The Scottish Government is consulting on its draft Statutory Guidance for safe staffing in health and care. The Health and ... Read More

Scottish government must reverse decision to cut 62 community health jobs in Glasgow, says UNISON

The decision to cut around 60 jobs in Glasgow’s community health services will have a severe impact on those who ... Read More

UNISON comment on the Scottish Government National Care Service partnership announcement

UNISON Scotland head of local government Johanna Baxter said:  “The announcement that social care staff will continue to be employed ... Read More

Briefing 129 NHS Pension Contributions Changes Consultation

The Scottish Public Pensions Agency (SPPA) is consulting on increasing the overall contribution made by members to the NHS pension ... Read More

UNISON members celebrate NHS 75th birthday

Here are a few photos of NHS staff celebrating the NHS 75th Birthday on Wednesday, June 5 ... Read More

NHS AT 75 – a suitable case for treatment

 Matt McLaughlin, head of health, at UNISON Scotland, explores five of the main issues in the NHS at 75 years ... Read More

UNISON Scotland response to NHS workforce report 2023

Matt McLaughlin, UNISON Scotland’s head of health, said: “This report confirms that the NHS is in the midst of a ... Read More

Briefing 127 – Scottish Household Survey 2021

This briefing looks at some key findings of the Scottish Household Survey 2021. This is a general population survey carried ... Read More

Scotland’s overworked nurses in a ‘catch-22’ as no time to report chronic staff shortages, says UNISON

Scotland’s largest health union, UNISON, has today (Friday) revealed the full impact of the NHS staffing crisis is not being ... Read More

More Health News

Latest briefings and submissions

Community Empowerment (Scotland) Bill response

Community Empowerment (Scotland) Bill response
UNISON raised a range of concerns in our submission to the 2012 consultation on what was then called the Community ...

Integration of Care in Social Care in Social Care in Scotland

Integration of Care in Social Care in Social Care in Scotland
UNISON Scotland members have been involved in various proposals for the integration of health and care services since the late1990s ...

Mental Health Strategy 2012 – 2015

Mental Health Strategy 2012 - 2015
UNISON acknowledges the work that the current Scottish Government and previous administrations have undertaken to tackle the challenges that mental ...

Care Integration Comments to Health & Sport Committee

Care Integration Comments to Health & Sport Committee
We understand that at present the Government intends to integrate health and social care primarily through legislation to replace Community ...

Inquiry into regulation of care for older people

Inquiry into regulation of care for older people
UNISON Scotland believes a major mistake in the provision care of the elderly was to allow profit to be part ...

Care Integration statement

Care Integration statement
This statement covers UNISON Scotland’s initial response to proposals for the integration of care services in Scotland either through a ...

More on briefings page