NHSScotland Resource Allocation Committee

Ensuring Fair Shares for everyone across Scotland

This website contains information on the work of the NHSScotland Resource Allocation Committee (NRAC) which ran from 2005 to 2007. Following the publication of the NRAC final report, the responsibility for maintaining, updating, and refining the formula for dividing the NHS budget among the NHS Boards has been transferred to the Technical Advisory Group on Resource Allocation (TAGRA). Full details on the work of TAGRA are available at: http://www.tagra.scot.nhs.uk/

NRAC was established in 2005 to improve the Arbuthnott formula, which was the method used at the time to divide the NHS budget among the NHS Boards. The Arbuthnott formula had been used since 2000 to allocate funding for Hospital and Community Health Services and GP Prescribing. These services amounted to approximately 75% of NHS Boards’ total funding. The Arbuthnott Formula distributed this money based on a weighted capitation approach that started with the number of people resident in each NHS Board area and then made adjustments for the age/sex of the NHS Board population, their need based on morbidity and life circumstances (including deprivation) and the additional costs of providing services in remote and rural areas. This formula was created within the values of the NHS to seek to provide equal opportunity of access to free healthcare at the point of need.

NRAC refined and extended the Arbuthnott Formula by evaluating new sources of evidence to determine healthcare need in different groups of people and using new information to identify items that influence the costs of healthcare provision. It also considered how the formula could be extended to cover other areas of healthcare expenditure (such as primary care dentistry, eye and pharmacy services) and how NHS services changes (such as the Kerr report) may affect resource allocation in the future.

As a result of the recommendations of NRAC, the new NRAC formula replaced the Arbuthnott formula for use in informing NHS Board allocations in 2009/10.