12 May 2009
Marlyn Glen has been informed by Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon that £282,000 was spent last year in NHS Tayside to develop the community health nurse pilot.
NHS Tayside is one of 3 health boards participating in the controversial scheme in which the all-in-one community health nurse replaces the traditional specialist nursing roles of district nurse, health visitor and school nurse.
The others are NHS Highland and NHS Borders.
NHS Lothian withdrew from the pilot, stating that the new role did not meet local health needs, and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, the largest health board in Scotland, did not take part in the pilot.
Ms. Glen said that she would be contacting NHS Tayside on the development of the pilot in the health board area.
"One major concern amongst nurses about the new community health nurse model is the potential loss of years of skill and experience from the invaluable work of nurses in traditional community health roles.
"The other is that if health boards in Scotland were to determine their own nursing standards, it would limit the attraction of and the scope for nursing careers across Scotland."
Nicola Sturgeon said that a decision on the future of community nursing services "will be made once the full implications of the research, which is not expected to be concluded until the autumn of 2010, have been considered.
"Ministers will also consider an interim evaluation report in December 2009."
However, in January of last year a Scottish Government spokesperson had said,
"The model will continue to be tested in four pilot sites over the next year which will allow an informed decision to be made in spring 2009 about the future of the community nursing service."
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