About NHS Highland
Putting quality first to deliver better health, better care and better value - The Highland Quality Approach
We serve a population of approximately 310,000 residents and provide a wide range of services across the largest land area (~40%) of any health authority in Scotland.
The areas we cover are benefiting from improved health services and so people are now living longer. We estimate that by 2031 the number of people aged 75 or over in Highland will double. This is important to plan for because older people tend to make more use of health and social services. As people age it becomes more likely that they may acquire one or more long-term condition(s) like asthma, chest problems, depression, dementia, diabetes and heart disease as well as having a greater risk of getting cancer.
Physical health is also affected by people’s life circumstances, their mental wellbeing, the lifestyle they lead and by the opportunities they have to get involved in their communities. There are many reasons for unhealthy lifestyles and for some people circumstances can conspire to make living healthily difficult without support. We therefore, need to do more to reduce the number of people smoking and drinking too much alcohol whilst doing everything we can to promote a healthy diet and regular exercise. If we can do these things it will benefit everybody.
NHS Highland is the biggest employer in the region so our staff are also important members of our communities. As an organisation, we make a very significant contribution to the local economy.
The Scottish Highlands are known world wide as containing some of the nation’s most outstanding natural environment. This also presents some challenges in delivering services. For instance a difficult terrain, rugged coastlines, many remote and rural area, inhabited islands, limited transport and communications infrastructure.
How NHS Highland is organised
NHS Highland is managed by a Board of Executive and Non-Executive Directors and is accountable to the Scottish Government through the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing.
The Chair and each of the Non-Executive Directors are appointed by the Cabinet Secretary.
Executive Directors are the Chief Executive, Medical Director, Director of Public Health, Chief Operating Officer, Director of Human Resources, Director of Nursing and Director of Finance.
The Board governs our accountability and performance.
These are Highland-wide departments or functions and include Business Transformation; Clinical Governance and Risk Management; Dental Services; e-Health; Finance; Human Resources; Infections, Prevention and Control; Nursing and Midwifery; Pharmacy; Planning and Performance; Procurement; Public Health and Public Relations and Engagement.
Planning, co-ordinating and delivery of services
The planning, co-ordination and delivery of services across NHS Highland is managed through Highland Health and Social Care Service and Argyll and Bute Community Health Partnership.