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Turas people


Turas Training Programme Management (TPM) holds information on trainees, trainers and programmes for several staff groups, such as medical, dental, pharmacy, psychology, healthcare science, and optometry. 

In July 2018, the Scottish Government announced a new lead employer model for Doctors in Training (DiT).  This means that DiTs will continue to move around placements but they will have one employer for the duration of their training programme. The change in employment model came into force on 1 August 2018.

Dentists in Training were added to the Lead Employer Model in September 2021 and Vocational Dental Practitioners (VDPs) were added in August 2022.

Four NHS Boards act as the lead employer,

  • NHS Grampian for the North Region
  • NHS Lothian for the East Region
  • NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde for the West Region
  • NHS Education for Scotland for GPs, Dentists in Training, VDPs, and other National Programmes

Turas People was created to support implementation of the lead employer arrangements across Scotland by enabling information to be easily shared across systems and users. 

Data from Turas TPM flows to Turas People for medical and dental staff and pre-populates records of trainees and details of their training programme. NHS Boards and trainees are then able to update employment details and manage contracts throughout placements through Turas People.

What data are published?

A monthly snapshot of Turas People database is taken for all Doctors and Dentists in Training (DDiTs) at the end of each month. These data are merged with the data from the main employment data source, SWISS, by a process in our data warehouse. This means that accurate and up-to-date placement information (such as board and specialty) can be included in the NHSScotland Workforce official statistics.

The employment data derived from Turas People and published for DDiTs are: NHS Board, specialty, grade, age, and sex. 

Data from Turas People was first used in the NHSScotland Workforce official statistics publication released in December 2018 (30 September 2018 census). 

From 30 September 2022, the NHSScotland workforce official statistics dashboard reports VDPs for the first time.  They are recorded under their employer board, NHS Education for Scotland, community dentistry specialty, and other grade.

In the Dentists table, VDPs are reported under their board of placement. This is identified using the education provider (dental practice) available in Turas People.


Prior to the lead employer model, DDiTs were recorded in SWISS by their board of placement. After implementation, they were recorded under their board of employment. To continue to report by board of placement, we required to merge SWISS and Turas People. 

Prior to December 2022 (30 September 2022 census) VDPs were reported using an extract from Turas TPM. After implementation, they were reported by merging SWISS and Turas People.

Further information

Trainee data on other staff groups are reported using Turas Training Programme Management.

Quality assurance and limitations

Quality assurance

A number of checks are in place to highlight any quality issues with the Turas People data. These are documented as part of the processing and merging with SWISS.


There is no unique identifier across Turas People and SWISS, therefore merging the two data sets occurs on multiple combination of fields. There are multiple reasons why this might happen, for example, missing data, data entry errors in either data set (different spellings of names), or the systems may be updated at different times.

We do not use any unmatched data from Turas People since we assume that staff employed in the  NHSScotland will be in SWISS as this is linked to payroll. If we include unmatched Turas People data then there is a risk of double-counting people.