INCLUDING the NHS in a controversial trade deal between the EU and the United States is opposed by two-thirds of Scottish voters, according to a new poll.

More than 2,000 people taking part in a Survation survey were told that the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) could boost the UK economy by £4 billion a year.

Herald View: Why we must avoid dangers in trade deal

However, they were also informed that as the deal stands currently, American multinational firms would be able to sue the Government if it attempted to take privatised health services back into public ownership.

Asked whether they supported the inclusion of the NHS in the deal, just 14.7 per cent said they did while 66.6 per cent said they did not, with the remainder unsure.

Opposition was stronger in Scotland than the rest of the UK, where levels of opposition as a whole were just 44 per cent, a separate study found.

The results were released as David Cameron and Barack Obama prepared to fly to Germany for negotiations on the trade deal, among other issues, with top EU leaders.

Herald View: Why we must avoid dangers in trade deal

The trade agreement has also become a major issue in the EU referendum campaign, with President Obama warning that the UK would go the "back of the queue" if it wanted to negotiate its own deal with the US. However, TTIP is viewed with suspicion particularly by many on the left.

Stewart Kirkpatrick, Head of Scotland at 38 Degrees, the organisation that commissioned the survey, said: "In our thousands, 38 Degrees members across Scotland are making our voices heard - and this poll proves the strength of public opposition to this trade deal that puts our NHS at risk.

Herald View: Why we must avoid dangers in trade deal

"Our challenge to the candidates in the Scottish election is this: show us that you’re on the side of Scottish people and tell us what concrete action you are going to take to stop this damaging trade deal from harming our health service."