The Uist dentistry situation will be the subject of a planned meeting between the Scottish Health Council and the Integration Joint Board (IJB).

The meeting has been called regarding the proposal to centralise dental services in Benbecula, after the decision was finally made by the Chief Executives of NHS Western Isles and the Comhairle in September last year.

Highlands and Islands Labour MSP, Rhoda Grant, has been told that the Scottish Government is sending the Chief Dental Officer (CDO) to visit with the IJB to discuss the outreach element of the proposal.

Mrs Grant said: “The Minister for Public Health, Joe FitzPatrick, has made it clear to me that he believes the existing service provision is not sustainable. 

"I know many service users in Uist disagree wholeheartedly with this stance. However, what the Minister has said is that the effectiveness of the outreach element of the new proposals will be a key issue and that he feels the most appropriate intervention is to closely monitor the development of this element before any escalation is required. 

"As such, he is sending the CDO to visit with the IJB and report back to him.

“The Scottish Health Council has advised me that they are not aware of this going through the NHS Board’s governance structure, that it has been progressed through the IJB’s governance structure, and as such they cannot consider calling the decision in. 

"They advise however, that they are seeking a meeting with the IJB to understand more about the status of the decision and planned next steps.”