NICOLA Sturgeon has hit out at health chiefs over the “unacceptable” way they communicated the imminent closure of a minor injuries unit.

The First Minister condemned NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde for publicising the move by sending out a press release, without alerting local MSPs.

Health bosses confirmed the unit at Yorkhill will close today, with facilities returning to the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital 40 minutes away.

The casualty unit was controversially closed more than a year ago, but reopened to cope with an influx of extra patients during winter.

Sandra White, SNP MSP for Glasgow Kelvin, said news that the unit was to close and return to the QEUH came as a shock.

She said: “That came as a surprise to me; it will be a surprise to my constituents who took part in a consultation and were absolutely sure that the minor injury unit would not go to the former Southern General Hospital."

Speaking during First Minister's Questions, she asked: “Does the First Minister agree that a press release is not the way to inform elected members or their constituents about such matters?

“Will she contact the Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS board to convene a meeting about where in the west of the city of Glasgow the [unit] will be based?”

Ms Sturgeon said the health board’s method of communication struck her as “unacceptable”.

She added: “I am happy to ask the health board to communicate directly with Sandra White.

“On the substantive issue of service provision, which is an important one in the city of Glasgow, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde reopened the west Glasgow minor injury unit at Yorkhill from early January as part of its plan to manage winter pressures. The timeframe was extended to cover the Easter holiday period.

“The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport has made it clear that she expects Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Board to ensure that the west of the city has appropriate unscheduled care provision, and I know that the board will soon consider proposals for plans to provide such local services.

“The health secretary will continue to monitor the progress of that work and provide updates. I will make sure that a message goes to Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Board to ask it to contact Sandra White directly.”

A spokeswoman for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said Yorkhill's minor injuries unit will close at 9pm on Friday, before returning to the QEUH from 9am on Saturday.