A Scottish NHS board has had to field over 400 separate Freedom of Information requests from the BBC and each of Holyrood’s three pro-Union parties.
Data obtained by Indyref2 shows that from January 2015 until January this year, NHS Orkney received a total of 418 separate Freedom of Information requests from the BBC, Labour, Conservatives and the Lib Dems combined. On average the small NHS board fielded over eleven Freedom of Information requests each month, many of the requests will have contained multiple questions.
A breakdown of the figures reveals that in 2015 NHS Orkney fielded 135 FOI requests from the aforementioned four sources. This grew to 140 in 2016 and dropped slightly to 131 last year. In January this year the board has had to deal with 12 FOI requests.
A further breakdown reveals that in the three year period to January 2018, Scottish Labour submitted most requests at 175. The Scottish Conservatives submitted 97 requests over the same period. The BBC and the Scottish Lib Dems submitted 73 requests apiece.
If replicated across all fourteen NHS Boards in Scotland, then valuable NHS resource will have been spent addressing almost 6000 individual Freedom of Infrmation requests from Scotland’s Unionist opposition parties and the BBC. The total cost to the NHS may never be known.
Indyref2 has requested the same figures from all fourteen of Scotland’s NHS Boards. We will publish the results in due course.
[Indyref2 obtained the data using a Freedom of Information request of our own. Mindfull of the need to minimise the time NHS officials spent addressing our request, we restricted it to simply asking for totals. We did not ask the specifics of each request submitted by the BBC, Labour, Conservatives and the Lib Dems.]
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