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History of NHS Scotland

 

History of NHS Scotland

NHS Scotland is the publicly funded healthcare systems in Scotland. It was founded by the National Health Service (Scotland) Act 1947 (since repealed by the National Health Service (Scotland) Act 1978) and was launched on 5 May 1948, under the control of the Secretary of State for Scotland As a result of the Scotland Act 1998, control over NHS Scotland transferred to the Scottish Government and Parliament in 1999.

Background

Prior to the creation of Scotland's NHS in 1948, the state was involved with the provision of healthcare, though it was not universal. Half of Scotland’s landmass was already covered by the Highlands and Islands Medical Service, a state-funded health system run directly from Edinburgh, which had been set up 35 years earlier. In addition, there had been a substantial state-funded hospital building programme during the war years. Scotland also had its own distinctive medical tradition, centred on its medical schools rather than private practice, and a detailed plan for the future of health provision based on the Cathcart report.[1]

The 1947 Act provided a uniform national structure for services which had previously been provided by a combination of the Highlands and Islands Medical Service, local government, charities and private organisations which in general was only free for emergency use. The new system was funded from central taxation and did not generally involve a charge at the time of use for services concerned with existing medical conditions or vaccinations carried out as a matter of general public health requirements; prescription charges were a later introduction in 1951. However, prescription charges in Scotland were abolished by the Scottish Government on 1 April 2011, leaving England as the only country in the UK in which such charges still exist.

References

  1. ^ "Birth of NHS Scotland: What made Scotland different?". Our NHS Scotland. Retrieved 20 July 2014. 

External links

  • NHS Scotland official website
  • 65 years of the NHS in Scotland website
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