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Influencing policy

Clinical standards

The Alliance believes that national standards are the most effective means of improving the quality of life for people affected by neurological conditions in Scotland and their families and carers and ensuring that the services provided are effective, timely and of high quality.


The Alliance has been closely involved over the last 2 years with Health Care Improvement Scotland (formerly Quality Improvement Scotland) to deliver an improvement programme to support all NHS Boards to meet the Clinical Standards for Neurological Health Services in Scotland. Alliance members have been involved at all stages of the Clinical Standards development and implementation including participating in Peer Reviews of all the NHS Boards in early 2012 to examine their performance in meeting the Standards.

A copy of the Clinical Standards can be found here.

A copy of the final Report of the Improvement Programme can be found here.

National Neurology Advisory Group

The Alliance is pivotal in ensuring that the work so far to improve Neurological Health Services continues across Scotland and momentum is not lost. The Alliance has been funded by Scottish Government to appoint a Project Coordinator to support the work programme of the National Neurology Advisory Group (NNAG). The NNAG comprises a range of key stakeholders from Scottish Government, NHS, Local Authority, Voluntary Sector, Healthcare Improvement Scotland and two people with Neurological conditions who have become ‘Neurological Voices’ are members of the group and provide a patient perspective. Andy Wynd former Chair of the Alliance and current Alliance Executive member has been appointed Chair of the NNAG. The NNAG will work with NHS Boards to continue to develop improvement in their neurological health services and provide opportunities for sharing information and practice. The NNAG has also established an Operational Management group to take forward specific work and key workstreams to focus upon specific conditions, data and audit and learning and sharing events. The Operational Management group comprises the Health Improvement Leads from all NHS Boards, representation from Alliance member organisations and Neurological Voices.

The Alliance ensures that its member organisations have opportunities to participate and that trained Neurological Voices representatives are integrated into all levels of the NNAG and supported thereafter. To read more about the current work of the NNAG click here.


Part of the Alliance's role is to ensure that people affected by Neurological Conditions are part of the process of improving Neurological Health Services via the Neurological Voices Project. The Project will continue to deliver training sessions across Scotland during 2012/2013 and will provide support and follow up to those who have already undertaken the training. Visit our Neurological Voices Section to find out more.


The Alliance is represented on the strategic board of the Managed Service Network for Neurosurgery (MSN), which aims to promote a 'single service' approach to neurosurgery in Scotland whilst ensuring the four Scottish units for neurosurgery provide safe, sustainable and high quality local services. Alliance member organisations are also represented on the Operational Management Group, established to undertake the detailed work of the MSN. Current work includes the implementation of Clinical Standards for Neurosurgery in Scotland and gathering of patient experiences, patient feedback on Epilepsy surgery and the provision of Deep Brain Stimulation Surgery. The MSN is currently redeveloping it's website which will provde a range of information and resources regarding Neurosurgery in Scotland. We will provide updates on this when available.

The Alliance has also been represented on a project being run by the Scottish Joint Neurosciences Council, (SNC) and members were actively involved in the Patient Focus Public Involvement sub-committee of the Neurosciences Implementation Group. The Alliance will continue to be involved in the work of the Scottish Joint Neurosciences Council which brings together clinicians and other professionals in the neuroscience community.

The Scottish Neurosciences Council held a successful national event in partnership with the Alliance in 2010 which brought together clinicians, managers and representatives of the voluntary sector to share and discuss current research and practice in neurosciences. We are currently in talks with the SNC regarding the possiblity of delivering another National Event in 2014 and we will provide further information when available.

Strategy development

The Alliance was involved in the workstreams set up to feed in to the development of the national Dementia strategy announced by the Government in June 2009. The Alliance aimed to ensure that issues relating to dementia occurring as a feature of some neurological conditions are addressed and accounted for in the strategy.

Workstreams made a series of recommendations on a range of areas including care pathways, prevention, treatment and support.

Consultations and briefings

The Alliance aims to provide responses to relevant consultations in order to ensure the views of our member organisations are fed in to the development of policy. We have also developed a series of briefings regarding a range of relevant areas. You can find out more in our resources section.