‘Lessons have to be learned from the past’

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IF bad news comes in threes, staff at NHS Lothian can at least look forward to a time when they are not at the centre of controversy.

First, there was the investigation into the waiting times scandal, then the bullying probe and now questions over how a £75,000 contract was awarded.

The focus is back on its recently departed chief executive, Professor James Barbour, after questions were raised about a deal to employ a private firm for help with “waiting times management”.

We do not know the rights and wrongs of this particular issue, and it is right that the government has ordered a full explanation, while there are questions remaining to be answered about the use of taxpayers money.

While this is ongoing, the hard-working staff of NHS Lothian have to get on with the job of caring for patients, their heads no doubt spinning as the board lurches from one crisis to another.

Of course, the current goings-on must be difficult for them, but we have to be sure that lessons are learned from mistakes made in the past. If this means another investigation and potentially another embarrassing report, then that is what it must take.

We can only hope that we get to the truth as swiftly as possible and that the bad news for NHS Lothian ends at three.

Sandy style

It only takes a few days of decent weather to remind us just what a fantastic attraction Portobello is to have on our doorsteps – and now the experts agree.

The beach has today been given resort status for the first time – one of only 14 to gain the accolade across Scotland.

The award recognises the huge amount of work which has been done behind the scenes to ensure Porty is clean and welcoming for its visitors.

Hopefully it will also be another boost for the town as it continues to develop into a modern attraction which can enjoy the sort of success and visitor numbers it saw before the package holiday became king.

Porty has been neglected over the years in both investment and marketing terms but, with the growth of the staycation, there is a significant market to tap into.

That work has already begun with the city council launching a “shop on the prom” initiative and with such a strong community spirit, we hope Edinburgh’s seaside now goes from strength to strength.

The weather may not always be there, but the welcome is.