Staff at NHS Grampian who have been asked to work from home during the pandemic are still waiting for laptops and headsets.
Aberdeen Donside MSP Mark McDonald has raised concerns with the health board after being informed that many “frustrated” employees had been affected by the delay.
The board said it had procured 700 devices and that another 1,000 had been ordered, but warned of “exceptional” demand for the equipment and challenges with suppliers.
However, Mr McDonald said: “I am troubled to learn that, 11 weeks into lockdown, NHS Grampian has still not been able to supply staff with all the equipment they require in order to enable effective home working.
“Many staff members are doing their level best to provide support to vulnerable individuals during this ongoing crisis, and they need to have the equipment to do that.
“If this is an issue of procurement then there needs to be some understanding of whether this is a problem that affects all health boards or if it is something which is causing difficulties in Grampian but not in neighbouring boards.”
The independent MSP has written to NHS Grampian chief executive Amanda Croft to ask about the situation, after being contacted by a constituent.
It is understood that the health board has told all office-based staff and some clinicians to work from home in recent weeks.
An NHS Grampian spokeswoman said: “We want to support our staff to work at home safely and securely and this includes the provision of appropriate IT equipment.
“The use of digital technology has been key in enabling NHS Grampian to respond to the pandemic and provide high-quality, person-centred services across health and social care.
“The key focus has been to prioritise clinicians’ ability to provide this care through use of digital technology.
“We have been able to procure over 700 digital devices, mainly laptops and including headsets where required, which has been distributed to prioritised staff and services.”
She added: “In terms of equipment deployment, we are procuring another 1,000 laptops to support our staff to respond to the ongoing situation, which will again be prioritised.
“This approach has ensured that NHS Grampian’s prioritised services have the required allocated resources to provide the optimum services to patients.
“It should be noted that the demand for allocation of IT equipment and access to digital systems has been exceptional.
“It has also been challenging to obtain new digital equipment due to low availability of stock among suppliers and extended time periods before purchase orders are delivered.”