How are the SNP preparing for the demand that the changing demographic of Scotland will have on our NHS?

Scotland’s population is changing and our health service must change with it. The fact that people are living longer is to be welcomed, but we must ensure that services match their needs both now and in the future.

To fight the pandemic, our NHS has had to pause or go slower on some other treatments to keep everyone safe. We will implement an NHS Recovery Plan, backed by a 20% increase in investment in frontline health services.

This will deliver an above inflation increase in NHS spending over the next Parliament of at least £2.5 billion.

We want to see as much health care as possible provided in the community and closer to people’s own homes, that means continuing to reform primary care and investing in services.

Primary care and GP services will see a greater share of NHS frontline investment over this parliament, with an increase of at least 25% in primary care funding.

We will roll out more mobile health services for direct delivery of care, particularly in rural areas. This will include additional screening services, stroke units and mental health services.

Our elective centre programme of construction and development is under way and includes a centre at the Perth Royal Infirmary, a centre in Aberdeen, one in Inverness, and a centre at St John’s Hospital in Livingston. To aid our recovery from the pandemic and ensure that we have the elective capacity we need for the further we will also take forward two additional elective centres in Cumbernauld and Ayrshire.

We will also invest to enable our specialist facilities to help serve the needs of populations that go much wider than the communities that live near them. That will include replacing the east of Scotland regional cancer centre at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh, the Edinburgh Eye Pavilion, and QEUH Institute of Neurosciences.