The Scottish budget: what it means for older people

The Scottish Government has announced its budget plans for the year ahead.

From record health spending to free personal care, here’s why the Scottish budget means older people get the best deal anywhere in the UK.

  • We’re delivering record revenue spending in our NHS of 12.7 billion – an increase of £120 million above inflation. And we’re increasing the share of the NHS budget dedicated to mental health and to primary, community, and social care.

  • We will progress our £200 million commitment to expand the Golden Jubilee Hospital and create five elective care centres. This will allow us to meet increasing demand for operations such as hip replacements or cataract operations due to our aging population.


  • Funding for the concessionary bus pass will continue, providing free bus travel on local or Scottish long-distance buses for Scotland’s older people.


  • Investment in tackling fuel poverty and energy efficiency will be increased. Additional funding will also be available in 2017-18 to test innovative fuel poverty approaches.

  • We will extend the Council Tax Reduction Scheme to exempt people living in more valuable homes but with below average earnings from Council Tax reforms. This will exempt 54,000 households from changes – a third of them pensioner households.

  • We will provide an increase in spending power on local government services. This includes the transfer of £107 million of NHS funding to health and social care, to support services and the payment of the Living Wage for social care workers.

  • Funding for housing adaptations will be maintained to help older and disabled tenants live safely and independently at home.