UNISON comment on Scottish Health Minister’s Parliament statement on trauma centres

Commenting on today’s statement to Parliament by Shona Robison Cab Sec for Health, Wellbeing and Sport concerning the delay until 2020 of a network of major trauma centres across Scotland Matt McLaughlin, Regional Organiser, Health, said,

“UNISON is pleased that the Cabinet Secretary has clarified the Governments position in parliament today, the pledge made by her predecessor, in the context of an election, was always over ambitious. It is fair and reasonable that time is taken to ensure that this significant shift in resources and delivery is done in a planned manner in agreement with trade unions, staff and patients to ensure that patient safety is put first.

In the West of Scotland many significant and major trauma’s are already transferred to Glasgow, the same happens in Edinburgh and other parts of the country, our communities are not at any significantly greater risk today because the QEUH has not been officially badged a ‘major trauma centre’, what’s important is that the Government, Health Boards, unions and local communities continue to work together to devise a programme of change and investment which is appropriate and safe as we work to meet this political pledge.”

Matt added,

“Opposition parties seem to think that the changes needed can be achieved overnight and with no consequential impact, that attitude and political gamesmanship does our NHS and our politics no good at all. The creation of these major trauma networks will have an impact on the services provided on some of the major sites identified, such as the new Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, it takes time to plan and organise how those services which may need to be moved out, will be accommodated. Similarly it takes time to ensure that local hospitals in areas such as Ayrshire, Lanarkshire, Fife, Borders and the Highlands can continue to provide appropriate services to compliment and support the trauma centres and at the same time retain appropriate specialist skills at their own boards

UNISON Contact

Matt McLaughlin, Regional Organiser, Health 07904 341979

Danny Phillips communications officer, 07944 664 110