Health bosses hope a replacement medical centre in a Moray town will cut down the need for travelling to appointments in Aberdeen.
Health and Social Care Moray is currently drawing up a blueprint to revamp the facilities in Keith with a new building.
NHS Grampian’s board will be asked today to endorse the “innovative” approach being taken by the organisation, which is a partnership with the council, to reshape services in the town which are no longer sustainable for the future.
No decisions have been taken yet about what facilities will be included in the new complex – but warnings have been issued that it will not be a like-for-like replacement for the existing health centre.
Figures to be presented during the talks show there were 25,000 outpatient appointments in Aberdeen for Moray patients last year.
In a report, project manager Susan Pellegrom explained that existing care arrangements in the community are currently not being delivered as effectively as believed to be possible.
She said: “In terms of our Fairer Scotland Duty, this challenges us to consider alternative ways of delivering these types of services, reducing the impact on people and their families of extensive travel and potential loss of earnings that have significant impact on their personal circumstances.
“Moray has a profile of a low-wage economy often preventing people from accessing assistance, so these types of pressures can have wider impacts on determinants of health and wellbeing.”
It is expected that a bid for funding for the project will be submitted to the Scottish Government in April next year.