NHS Highland

NHS Highland is one of the fourteen regions of NHS Scotland. Geographically, it is the largest Health Board, covering an area of 32,500 km2 (12,500 sq mi) from Kintyre in the south-west to Caithness in the north-east, serving a population of 320,000 people.[3] In 2016–17 it had an operating budget of £780 million.[4]

NHS Highland
TypeNHS board
HeadquartersAssynt House
Beechwood Park
IV2 3BW[1]
Region served
Staff8,564 (2018/19)[2]
Websitewww.nhshighland.scot.nhs.uk Edit this at Wikidata

Organisational structureEdit

NHS Highland is composed of two Health and Social Care Partnerships (HSCPs). The Highland Health and Social Care partnership covers the local government area of Highland. It has two main divisions. The North and West operational unit covers Caithness, Sutherland, Lochaber and Skye, Lochalsh and Wester Ross. The Inner Moray Firth operating unit covers Raigmore Hospital, Badenoch and Strathspey, Mid Ross, Inverness and Nairn.

The Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership covers the local government area of Argyll and Bute.[5]


On 1 October 2001 NHS Highland health board was established. NHS Highland's first board members were announced 10 days later.[6] In 2005 Community Health Partnerships (CHPs) were introduced.

On 1 April 2006, NHS Highland took over responsibility for part of the former NHS Argyll and Clyde region (corresponding approximately to the Argyll and Bute council area), the other part of which was transferred to NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

On 1 April 2012 NHS Highland became the lead agency responsible for Adult Social Care services, with the council taking over issues relating to children.[7]

It directly employs over 10,500 people and there are also around 1,000 primary care staff in the region.[8]

In December 2014, Broadford was chosen as the site for a new hospital, after a consultation process.[9] Some campaigners had hoped that the central hub of services could have been based at Portree Hospital, however the Scottish Health Council has pronounced the process followed by the board as legitimate.[10]

In 2017, the board reduced the number of main administrative buildings- refitting Assynt house, which the board owns, and reorganising Larch house which is leased.[11]

Skyports, a drone delivery service provider, began delivering pathology samples, medicine, essential personal protective equipment and COVID-19 testing kits in Argyll and Bute in 2020. Delivery should take only 30 minutes, where previously it has taken 48 hours. Communication will be provided by Vodafone’s 4G network and satellite communications. The plan is to integrate the operation into the local NHS supply chain.[12]

Training initiativesEdit

In 2011 NHS Highland announced it would be running a week-long "boot camp" for junior surgeons at Raigmore Hospital, Inverness.[13]


NHS Highland is responsible for a number of different types of hospital - a large district general hospital, 3 rural general hospitals, a psychiatric hospital and a number of community hospitals

Primary CareEdit

The board started tests of the GP Near Me service with patients of Riverview Practice in Wick, Caithness in October 2018. Patients can book video appointments if hands-on care is not required. A similar system NHS Near Me has been used in Caithness for hospital outpatient appointments.[14]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "General Enquiries". NHS Highland. Retrieved 5 December 2019.
  2. ^ "Annual Report and Accounts for the year ended 31 March 2019" (PDF). NHS Highland. Retrieved 23 January 2020.
  3. ^ "About NHS Highland". NHS Highland. Retrieved 18 July 2014.
  4. ^ "NHS Highland CV". NHS Highland. Retrieved 4 September 2017.
  5. ^ "Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership". NHS Highland. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  6. ^ "Highland NHS Board" (Press release). Scottish Government. 11 October 2001. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
  7. ^ Ross, Hugh (29 February 2012). "Making sense of a new care system..." Inverness Courier. Retrieved 6 September 2017.
  8. ^ "NHS Highland Medical Director". BMJ Careers. Retrieved 13 June 2014.
  9. ^ "Broadford on Skye chosen for new hospital". BBC News. 2 December 2015.
  10. ^ "Protest opposes Skye and Lochalsh hospital plans". BBC News. 22 June 2015. Retrieved 13 July 2015.
  11. ^ Sweeney, Val (5 February 2017). "Health staff on the move as £100m savings sought". Inverness Courier. Retrieved 6 September 2017.
  12. ^ "Space-enabled drone deliveries aid COVID-19 response in Scotland". Building Better Healthcare. 13 July 2020. Retrieved 30 August 2020.
  13. ^ "NHS Highland runs 'boot camp' for consultants". BBC News. 5 May 2011. Retrieved 30 May 2014.
  14. ^ "NHS Highland trials GP Near Me video service in Wick". Digital Health. 29 October 2018. Retrieved 2 December 2018.

External linksEdit