Transforming health and social care in Scotland


Audit Scotland supports the improvement of public services by looking at how public money is spent, and whether policies are achieving desired outcomes for individuals and bodies. We carry out extensive work on Scotland’s health and social care services, which face challenges from reducing budgets, increasing demand, and an ageing population.

We also report annually on the financial performance of councils and NHS bodies, such as health boards, and integration authorities, on behalf of the Auditor General and the Accounts Commission.

The hub below sets out more information on our work in this important area.


Key facts

Key facts

  • 7.1% increase drug costs between 2014/15 and 2015/16
  • £445 million savings planned by health boards in 2017/18
  • £10.8 billion estimated annual value of 788,000 unpaid carers' contribution
  • Estimated 18-29% increase need for health and social care services by 2030
  • 1.5 million hospital procedures performed in 2016/17
  • 21,700 people receiving 10+ hours homecare per week in 2014



Our reports feature several exhibits that visualise complex data and processes in an accessible and informative way. See the examples below or click on our reports to find more.



Future work

Rolling programme

Work programme 2017 - 2021



Other resources

What is integration?

What is integration?

Our short guide summarises some of the key information from our first report on health and social care integration, and outlines how Integration Authorities are structured and function.

 Download the guide - PDF 2.1Mb

self-directed support

Self-directed Support

We published our report Self-directed support: 2017 progress report in August 2017. It included an easy-to-read summary of the report, and the results of the survey we undertook to hear from people using self-directed support.

 Download the easy-to-read summary - PDF 154Kb 

 Download the survey results - PDF 496Kb

nhs in scotland 2017

Overview of the NHS for 2017

The podcast for our report on the NHS in Scotland 2017 discusses how the health service has changed over the last 70 years, the challenges it's facing now and the strengths it can build on. The checklist  is designed for non-executive directors to help with their role in overseeing the performance of NHS boards.

 Download the podcast - PDF 6Mb

 Download the checklist - PDF 201Kb

social work in Scotland

Social work services: views of users and carers

For our report on Social work in Scotland, we produced a supplement on the views of people and their carers using social work services.

 Download the supplement - PDF 433Kb

health boards' expenditure

Health boards' expenditure, cost pressures and performance

View our interactive graphic from our NHS in Scotland 2017 report which includes information about health boards' expenditure,  demand for NHS services, overall performance and key public health indicators.

changing models of health and social care

Case studies: New models of health and social care

We have identified a number of new care models introduced across Scotland that are designed to deliver more care to people in community settings in line with the 2020 Vision.

 Read the case studies - PDF 843Kb

organisation logos for Health and Care Group

Sharing Intelligence for Health and Care Group

Audit Scotland is on the Sharing Intelligence for Health & Care Group alongside the Care Inspectorate, Healthcare Improvement Scotland, Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland, NHS Education for Scotland, and Public Health & Intelligence.

 Read our report for 2016-17 - PDF 3.4Mb


Annual audits of councils and health bodies

Audit Scotland annually reviews the financial performance and processes of more than 200 public bodies. The Auditor General may also prepare a Section 22 report for the Parliament if any specific concerns or issues have been raised in the audit of a public body. Find out about the performance of health and social care organisations in your local area.


Get in touch

To discuss Audit Scotland’s work on health and social care or let us know what you think about this page, please contact:


Claire Sweeney

Claire Sweeney, Associate Director

Leigh Johnston

Leigh Johnston, Senior Manager