A key step has been taken along the way to providing the north-east with a £56.3 million investment in health services.
NHS Grampian wants to improve the way its staff carry out elective surgery, such as hip operations, and wants to spend the money on a new elective care centre in Aberdeen and a range of other centres in the region.
At a meeting yesterday, NHS Grampian’s board voted to apply to the Scottish Government for £2m which would be used to prepare a business case for the project.
Concerns were raised at the meeting that the board would struggle to staff the new facilities.
Board member Jonathan Passmore said: “I have major concerns about staffing.
“We’re talking across the board and we have to consider the potential impact of Brexit (making it harder to recruit foreign staff).
“To sign up to something which potentially risks our workforce, I would consider to be a strategic error. It makes me really nervous.”
Another board member, Professor Steve Heys, said: “It’s an exciting development.
“One of its strengths will be the link-up with Aberdeen University – the teaching and research facilities will attract staff.”
The board’s director of modernisation Graeme Smith said: “What we’re going to do in the planning is to look at all these issues. All these very valid concerns will be looked into.”