Professional guidance

Different professional bodies are developing guidance for their members - we've linked the ones we're aware of here - get in touch if there are any you've found useful that we've missed.

Get in touch with the Comms team if you have something you'd like added.

Updated guidance for NHS Scotland Workforce from NHS Scotland

Health Protection Scotland - guidance for professionals in healthcare and non-healthcare settings on best practice for infection prevention and control

COVID-19 Guidance for paediatric services, from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health

COVID-19 Infection and pregnancy, from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists

Helping children, young people and their families manage their anxiety aout COVID-19

  • There is a great deal of information, coverage and opinion circulating about COVID-19. This document aims to provide reliable advice, information and a list of trustworthy links for supporting children, young people and their families during this time.

Approving Documents/Digital Signatures

As many staff are now working from home it may be difficult to sign a variety of documents such as invoices, DRFs, Special Indents etc.

Most systems such as PECOS, eAuthoriser, SSTS, eExpenses etc are already set up with electronic approval so these should remain the default options.

However, for the occasions where you would normally physically sign a document please note that an email from an approved signatory’s NHS mail account can also act as formal approval. NHS emails from the budget holder’s account is accepted as a digital signature similar to how the eAuthoriser process works.

If you have any queries on this please contact Karl Williamson in Finance.


Data Protection and Information Governance

There is straight forward guidance around Working from Home and Data Protection here, if working from home, for you, involves transporting patient records please familiarise yourself with the Transportation of Health Records Policy.

We know access to accurate information and effective communication is essential in the current situation - a summary of data protection and information governance advice is shared below:

In response to the COVID-19 outbreak the Scottish Government and Information Commissioner have acknowledged that we need to work in different ways from usual and the focus should be on what information we share and who we share it with, rather than how we share it.

Practical advice on some of the tools you can use to support individual care, share information and communicate with colleagues during this time is available at:

COVID-19 Information Governance Advice | Scottish Government

Instant messaging can be a useful tool in supporting the delivery of direct care, particularly in an acute context. There are, however, some important data protection considerations surrounding the use of these systems. The following link highlights some of the patient confidentiality issues to be considered when using instant messaging solutions:

Instant Messaging Advice

The above guidance may change as the situation evolves, so please check it regularly.

As noted in the guidance, these exceptional times change how we share sensitive and confidential information – it does not change our legal responsibility to hold the information entrusted to us in the strictest confidence.  If you need to share personal and confidential information, only share the minimum amount necessary to fulfil the task.

Statements from the Information Commissioner's Office

Data Protection and Coronavirus - what organisations need to know:

Data Protection and Coronavirus - statement for Health and Care Practitioners:

If you have any questions or concerns about the protection of patient and staff privacy please contact a member of the Information Governance Team on 01595 743363 or email