Agency locum doctors and dentists are used by NHS Boards to support the workforce by providing additional temporary capacity. The annual expenditure on locums includes those who are hired through private agencies.
Data are sourced from NHSScotland's Finance Platform. They are extracted, quality assured and provided to NES by NHS National Services Scotland for the financial year.
What data are published
Medical and dental locum spend was first reported in June 2018 for the previous five financial years. Since then medical locum agency spend is updated annually in June release of the NHSScotland Workforce official statistics publication. Data reported are spend on agency locums by NHS Board.
Locums who are directly employed by NHS Boards, such as those working on Locum Appointment in Service or Locum Appointment in Training grades, are not included.
Audit Scotland report on reducing expenditure on medical locums released in 2010: https://www.audit-scotland.gov.uk/docs/health/2010/nr_100617_medical_locums.pdf
A number of steps are in place to ensure that these data are reported accurately.
The data provided are at a high level and it is not possible to identify spend by other variables such as Specialty.