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£3m winter boost for health boards

Health boards are to get an extra £3 million to help cope with the added pressure faced by the NHS in winter, the Scottish Government has announced.

Norovirus (the winter vomiting bug), higher numbers of falls, fractures and respiratory illnesses can all put a strain on the health service during the colder months.

The additional funding was announced after warnings that higher-than-normal levels of the vomiting bug could be recorded this winter.

Health Secretary Alex Neil said the money would help make sure the NHS was "fighting fit for winter".

NHS boards will be able to use the cash to provide extra out-of-hours cover from senior medics, as well as increased home support services, to make sure people can go home from hospital as soon as they are well enough.

Mr Neil said: "We know health services face added pressure in the winter and NHS boards have to be ready to manage potential increases in demand. These measures are over and above what NHS boards have already put in place."

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