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Elections to Scottish NHS boards attract few voters and high costs

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.d1589 (Published 11 March 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d1589
  1. Bryan Christie
  1. 1Edinburgh

Fewer than one person in five turned out to vote in the first ever direct elections to NHS boards in Scotland, which have cost over £11 (€13; $18) per voter.

The combination of low turnout and high costs has been criticised by doctors’ leaders who say the £772 986 spent on the election would have been much better invested in direct patient care.

Legislation was passed in Scotland in 2009 to pilot direct elections to NHS boards to see if this would improve public participation and accountability in decision making. Voting took …

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