Scottish Government must be prepared to expand NHS death in service scheme

Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton has today pressed the Scottish Government to ensure that all health and care workers will be covered by an expanded NHS death in service scheme.

Earlier this week, Mr Cole-Hamilton launched the Scottish Liberal Democrats plan for supporting frontline NHS and care workers which included a commitment to ensuring every NHS and care worker is eligible for the death in service scheme as well as proposing that the Government pay for all the funerals of key workers who die trying to protect others from Covid 19. 

The Scottish government has agreed that all NHS staff providing frontline treatment to Covid-19 patients will receive full death benefits. However, this does not apply to non-frontline workers or to workers in the care sector.

Mr Cole-Hamilton said:

"It is right that all returning staff in our NHS are eligible for the death in service scheme but the scheme is significantly less generous than that offered by the military. 

"Similarly it is important to acknowledge that the battle against Covid-19 is not just taking place in hospitals. The Scottish Government must ensure that care staff are not treated as second class citizens once again.

"Expanding the death in service scheme to cover these workers as well as paying for the funerals of all key workers who die trying to protect others from this virus, would be appropriate in the circumstances and form an aspect of the recognition for their selfless hard work and sacrifice."

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