NHS Highland Chairman Garry Coutts today admitted that it had been “a tough year” for the north health board.
He told the public session of the health board’s annual review in Fort William that it had managed to achieve financial balance in 2013/14 by borrowing £2.5million from the government.
Mr Coutts said: “I am very grateful for the government’s support because it meant we were able to focus on quality rather than look at how we were going to make the savings at the end of the year.”
Public Health Minister Michael Matheson said it was not unusual for health boards to require government assistance, adding that he was hopeful that NHS Highland would not need to do so again.
He said: “Occasionally boards will require a bit of financial support from government as there can be expenditure issues that can come up with a financial year.
“One of the things we will be working with the board on is that they achieve that each year without the need for support for central government.
“The board has now put measures in place to make sure they achieve a financial balance themselves more effectively in years to come and I am confident they are now better placed to achieve this themselves.”