The purpose of this draft strategy document is to set out the proposals for a Quality Strategy for NHS Scotland. These proposals are based on our knowledge about what works well in Scotland, and build on the range of excellent progress and work underway already at local, regional and national levels. The strategy has been developed through wide ranging discussions with the people working in NHSScotland, and with patients and carers through opportunities such as the Patients Rights Bill consultation and the 'Big Cancer Conversation', with reference to the leading international thinking, and reflecting our understanding about the future challenges we will face. Annex 1 provides a summary of the different groups which have contributed specifically to the work on developing the Quality Strategy. There have been numerous others who have contributed either knowingly or unknowingly to the strategy - many through their initial ideas and responses offered at the NHSScotland event in June 2009 - a summary of some of the key messages is included at Annex 2.
There is a clear consensus that the time is right to develop an ambitious and inspirational national healthcare quality strategy for Scotland, building on, drawing together and accelerating the individual, local and national work we have already made good progress with across NHSScotland which has been recognised and commended internationally. This strategy has been developed to take advantage of the unique opportunity we have to work in partnership with patients, carers, NHS staff, other public sector bodies and the third sector to put Scotland at the international forefront of international healthcare quality and to ensure that future generations also enjoy a world-leading quality National Health Service in Scotland.