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Date: 25 May 2005

Implement Kerr Report and move health debate on - says UNISON

Scotland's largest healthcare union, UNISON, today called on the Scottish Executive, local health boards and local people to accept and implement Professor Kerr's report, on the structure of the NHS in Scotland.

"The status quo is not an option and Professor Kerr's report recognises that fact", said Jim Devine, UNISON's Scottish Organiser for Health. "Professor Kerr has listened to the people of Scotland and we should now listen to him. As Professor Kerr's report highlights, the Scottish Healthcare system is very different from England. This is quite right, devolution is about innovation, not imitation.

"We are also pleased that Professor Kerr has ignored the lobbying for increased private sector involvement in our NHS, and recognised that Scottish needs and infrastructure require distinctive Scottish solutions."

"Therefore we believe that the Kerr Report should be endorsed and implemented. To achieve that we need two preconditions. Firstly, a mature Scottish Parliament - meaning that our MSP's must look at healthcare on a Scotland-wide basis, and not 129 different areas. Secondly, while we can plan the delivery of services on a regional or Scottish basis, there should be no restructuring of the NHS for at least five years to allow stability."


For Further Information Please Contact: Jim Devine, Scottish Organiser 0845 355 0845(w) 07876 441239(m) Chris Bartter (Communications Officer) 0845 355 0845(w) 0771 558 3729(m)