Wishaw Press - - SHOWSTOPPERS - Ni­cola Findlay

Brexit could spell disas­ter for NHS La­nark­shire.

Doc­u­ments ob­tained through a Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion (FOI) re­quest show the health board may not be in “full op­er­a­tional readi­ness” for EU with­drawal on March 29 next year.

The risk of wors­en­ing staff short­ages in vi­tal health ser­vices, as well as ris­ing costs and less avail­abil­ity of drugs/treat­ments within NHS La­nark­shire fol­low­ing Brexit are “very high”.

Ini­tially, the risk from the im­pact of Brexit was deemed “high” but this was raised to “very high” by the health board, while “tol­er­ance for Brexit” is “low.”

Lead­ing union Unite has warned the FOI has flaggedup se­ri­ous con­cerns over a lack of strate­gic plan­ning by NHS La­nark­shire and across the coun­try, with the health board un­aware of pre­cisely how many work­ers from the EU sup­port crit­i­cal ser­vices within the NHS.

In re­sponse to a Scot­tish Govern­ment ques­tion­naire ask­ing if the de­pen­dency on non-uk EU work­ers within the work­force has been as­sessed, the health board say they have “no cen­tral data­base that col­lates and holds this in­for­ma­tion” and so far a “small num­ber” of staff have come for­ward with con­cerns.

The im­pact of staffing in the in­de­pen­dent sec­tor – pri­mar­ily care homes and

Un­cer­tainty There are a num­ber of con­cerns re­lat­ing to ser­vice de­liv­ery which have been high­lighted in the Brexit doc­u­ments

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