NHS Education for Scotland

NHS Education for Scotland (NES) is an education and training body and a special health board within NHS Scotland.

NHS Education for Scotland
Region servedScotland

NES is the national special NHS health board with a responsibility to develop and deliver education and training for those people who work in NHS Scotland.[1]

To enable it to fulfil its remit of promoting best practice in the education and lifelong learning of all NHS staff, NES has statutory functions.[2]

NES has a Scotland wide role in undergraduate, postgraduate and continuing professional development and maintains a local perspective through centres in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee, Aberdeen and Inverness.[3]

NES also cooperate and collaborate with regulatory bodies and other organisations that are concerned with the development of the health and care workforce.

Across NHS Scotland, much of the learning that staff undertake is completed in the workplace.[4]

It maintains the Knowledge Network, a service that allows NHS staff to share information.[5] The Knowledge Network also contains educational resources and was a further development of the NHS Scotland e-Library. NES is a member of UKSG, an international association that aims to connect the information community and encourage the exchange of ideas on scholarly communication.[6]


NES was established in April 2002, bringing together three existing bodies - the Scottish Council for Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education, the Post Qualification Education Board for Pharmacists, and the National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting for Scotland.[7]

Since it was formed in 2002, NES has adapted to many changes, working with partner stakeholders to support healthcare professionals and other workers across a range of organisations.[8]

The NES workforce numbers jumped from around 600 people to just over 1000 people in August 2011 as a result of NES taking on the role as employer of GP trainees, when these trainees are on placements in general practice settings.[9]

Working with other organisations

To develop the health and care workforce, NES have aimed to coordinate their efforts with the regulatory bodies and have developed formal arrangements with some organisations. Since 2006 they have had a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the General Medical Council[10] and in June 2014 they announced a MoU with the General Pharmaceutical Council.[11] In February 2013 they updated an agreement with the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services (IRISS) [12]


  1. "NHS Boards". Scottish Government. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
  2. "NHS Education for Scotland Board". Scottish Government. 11 February 2010. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
  3. "A refreshed strategic framework for 2014-19" (PDF). NHS Education for Scotland. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
  4. "NHS Education for Scotland". Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework. Retrieved 5 July 2014.
  5. "New NHS Scotland 'knowledge bank' launched". BBC News. 7 June 2010. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
  6. "members". UKSG. Retrieved 6 July 2014.
  7. "NHS Education for Scotland". Scottish Government. 17 May 2002. Retrieved 5 July 2014.
  8. "Analysis of Responses to the Consultation Document A New Special Health Board for Education in NHSScotland". Scottish Government. 16 September 2002. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
  9. "NHS Board Projected Staff In Post Changes In 2011/12". Scottish Government. 31 August 2011. Retrieved 5 July 2014.
  10. "A Memorandum of Understanding NHS Education for Scotland and General Medical Council". General Medical Council. March 2010. Archived from the original on 3 May 2014. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
  11. "Memorandum of Understanding: NHS Education for Scotland and the General Pharmaceutical Council" (PDF). General Pharmaceutical Council. June 2014. Retrieved 2 August 2014.
  12. Cockburn, Sarah (27 February 2013). "IRISS and NES - working together". Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services. Retrieved 2 August 2014.
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