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27 June 2003

Health Service Reform

MEASURES 'LONG OVERDUE' SAYS STEVENSON

SNP Shadow Deputy Health Minister and local MSP Stewart Stevenson has today welcomed the Scottish Government announcement of reform in the NHS but has said that it is long overdue and has expressed concern that the public involvement measures will not be carried out by an independent body.

Mr Stevenson said:

"I welcome the reform and modernisation of the NHS which has been announced by Malcolm Chisholm today, however, these initiatives are long overdue.

"This Labour government has been promising that these measures would be taken for the last six years and I am pleased that they have finally taken action.

"I am however, concerned about the fact that the body set up to deal with public involvement is not independent from the NHS Boards as it may not be possible for them to be fully objective.

"The Executive must monitor these measures to ensure that they benefit both patients and staff and will work towards improving the NHS by reducing the amount of red tape."

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