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Last Updated: Saturday, 1 April 2006, 16:00 GMT 17:00 UK
Massive health board begins work
The NHS board was restructured in 2002
NHS Argyll and Clyde was scrapped by the health minister
Scotland's newest health authority serving one in five Scots has officially come into existence.

Health Minister Andy Kerr decided to scrap the Argyll and Clyde NHS board last year due to mounting debts.

Its massive area was split, with NHS Highland taking Argyll and Bute and NHS Greater Glasgow the rest.

The new NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde board, which will add Renfrewshire, West Dunbartonshire and Inverclyde, is responsible for 1.19 million people.

It will have 44,000 staff and a total budget of 2.2bn.

A total of 853 GPs in 280 practices, 577 dentists in 260 practices, 1209 consultants, 300 pharmacies and 182 opticians' practices will serve the new combined population.

'Levels of excellence'

They will be supported by locally-based teams of community nurses, physiotherapists, dieticians, sexual health advisers and smoking cessation teams.

Chairman of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Professor Sir John Arbuthnott, said: "The sheer scale of our new board will, we hope, allow us to strive for new levels of excellence.

"Everyone living in our new health board area should be reassured that the quality of service you get, and the way in which you get it, will be the same next week as it was last week.

"We're looking to learn from each other over time, and to improve standards for everyone."

NHS Highland has launched a consultation on whether it should change its name to reflect its extended area.

Health board area to be split up
08 Dec 05 |  Scotland
Health board goes under the knife
19 May 05 |  Scotland
No decision on NHS board's fate
21 Apr 05 |  Scotland
'Cut NHS jobs to tackle deficit'
11 Jan 05 |  Scotland
Debt leads to hospital closures
08 Nov 04 |  Scotland
Kerr in talks over health debt
04 Nov 04 |  Scotland


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