About NHS 24

NHS 24 works with key partners in the Scottish Government, Health Boards, particularly the Scottish Ambulance Service, Health and Social Care Partnerships, Local Authorities, other parts of the public sector e.g. Police Scotland, Independent and Voluntary Sectors and Social Care.

NHS 24 delivers the national contact centre responsible for providing a range of telehealth and telecare services to the public. NHS 24 also supports and facilitates developments in telehealth and telecare to improve the health and wellbeing of the people of Scotland.

Our Purpose

Our purpose is helping to deliver a healthier Scotland by connecting people to health and care advice, information and support 24/7

NHS 24 Strategic Direction

NHS 24 has for a number of years delivered ‘out of hours’ services in support of the wider health and care system. In addition to this service, we have expanded the delivery of our digital health and care services, which have taken on a much higher public profile and importance in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Scottish Government has now asked that NHS 24 deliver an expanded and more integrated role in the delivery of health and care services. This is in response to increasing demands on the health and social care system as well as the need to find new ways of delivering safe and accessible services to the people of Scotland. 

The NHSScotland programme to redesign the urgent care national pathway will have an impact across the whole organisation including our Strategic Relationship management, Workforce Leadership & Management, Integration of our Digital Assets into our Service Model and Estates Strategy.

This step-change in our role brings challenges and significant opportunities for NHS 24 now and in the years to come. This requires us to work as part of the wider political, fiscal and policy environment and is a key leadership role for the NHS 24 Chief Executive. This ‘systems leadership’ approach must be reflected in the skills, aptitudes and ways of working of the Executive Management Team, leaders and staff across the organisation.

The NHS  24 Digital Strategy requires on-going development, including the delivery of our Connect Programme and is critical to our organisation taking on that more integrated service delivery role. Building digital capability to support the delivery of our priorities and playing a central role in the delivery of Scotland’s Digital Health and Care Strategy is a key leadership role for our Chief Executive.

NHS Strategy

Our Strategy has three main themes:

  • Supporting people to live longer, healthier lives;
  • Alignment with national healthcare strategies; and
  • Building a stronger organisation.  

Our services are delivered across a range of channels, including telephone, online, webchat, text, email and social media. To support the achievement of the Strategy, our delivery principles are:- 

  • Virtual and public-facing; Multiple channels and technologies; Serving everyone in Scotland according to their need; Supporting the whole healthcare system; Delivering services 24/7; Supporting self-management; Best value and sustainability; A strong and supported workforce


Our Workforce

As a national board, NHS 24 has staff based in centres across Scotland, with our largest staff cohort based in West Central Scotland. 

We have a total staffing complement of circa 1,600 staff with around 80% of that staffing cohort directly employed in the delivery of our national call centre operations.  

The NHS24 workforce is the primary driver of our ability to achieve and sustain the transformational change in what we need to do and how we need to deliver. 

Continually improving communication and dialogue with our staff, our culture and ways of working that embrace the NHSScotland values is core to the delivery of a sustainable and engaged workforce. Embracing the ‘office of the future’, integrating organisational and workforce development planning with our strategic objectives is key to our success.

Additional Information