‘Bonuses for
need reform’

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A BONUS scheme which hands millions of pounds a year to hospital consultants should be reformed, a UK-wide review has recommended.

Former Lothians SNP MSP and retired GP Dr Ian McKee, who campaigned against the scheme, welcomed the proposals as a step forward.

Two years ago, the Scottish Government froze both the nationally-funded distinction awards and “discretionary points” paid by health boards.

Now the Review Body on Doctors’ and Dentists’ Remuneration has said the payments – currently more or less automatic, according to critics – should be closely linked to performance appraisals and should be one-off annual lump sums which are not pensionable.

Dr McKee, who stood down as an MSP last year, said: “I welcome this step forward. It was ludicrous the payments were ever made pensionable.

“But if you’re going to have an incentive scheme, serious consideration should be given to opening it up to nurses and other NHS professionals.”

The Scottish Government said it would be looking at how the report could be taken