GP dispensing and its vital role in sustaining healthcare in rural communities, was given some much needed focus in the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday. Alan Kennedy and Jean Kerr, of the Cumbrae Public Reference Group faced a number of probing questions around why this hot topic in rural practice deserves a change in the law. Moreso, why rural communities wish to have a greater voice in the decision-making process involved in setting up pharmacies, in areas served by dispensing practices.
Recruitment and retention to rural healthcare in Scotland is in crisis, and recent examples in Cumbrae and Benbecula are just some examples where the present regulations threaten the continuity of healthcare provision in rural, and particularly island, communities.
Giving evidence under petition PE1492 at the Public Petitions Committee, they did much to ensure that the issue is being taken seriously. You can watch their session below or at the BBC Democracy Live website.