Publication - FOI/EIR release

NHS funded research projects: FOI release

Published: 16 Aug 2018

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Published:
16 Aug 2018
NHS funded research projects: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/18/01963  
Date received: 11 July 2018   
Date responded: 9 August 2018
 
Information requested
 
“Last year you sent me details of the projects you have funded over the last several years. You sent me 6 files in all. I have attached the last one of the 6 “Data6”. Please could you send me a new file Data7 that updates the information I have to the latest information that you have available, so it should include the latest project that you have
funded.”

Response
 
In responding to your request we will answer each of the questions you asked separately.
 
All of the information you have requested is available from the Chief Scientist Office website: https://www.cso.scot.nhs.uk/outputs/cso-funded-research/
 
Under section 25(1) of FOISA, we do not have to give you information which is already reasonably accessible to you. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy of the webpages.

(2) Your request

You asked for “2. I have a selection of Research Activity and Expenditure Reports and I understand from them that these are normally returned to you in May or June each year. Please could you send to me the 2017/2018 reports for each of the NHS Boards.”

Response to your request

I enclose a copy of most of the information you requested. [See Attachment 01]

Please note that the reporting format was changed in 2017-18 and is expected to fully transition to a new format from 2018-19.
 
(3) Your request

You asked for “3. Could you confirm how a project researching addiction would be classified: mental health or public health or NHS Needs?”

Response to your request

The information you have requested is available from information previously provided to you. Under section 25(1) of FOISA, we do not have to give you information which is already reasonably accessible to you. The reasons why that exemption applies are explained below.

(4) Your request

You asked for “4. In these RA&E reports under Table 2b it states “For NRS Generic Support, describe how much funding has been recovered on posts through research grants or commercial activities.”

4i) Please can you help me because I do not understand what this means. It would help me if you could give me an example.

4ii) The amount in the Glasgow RA&E 2016-2017 report states £4,705,679 for NRS Generic Support. To me the quote above suggests this is not money spent by the CSO but is money that external funders have provided to fund posts. Is this correct?

4iii) If it is external funding then this amount seems to get included in your outturn report when the CSO is not actually spending it. Is this correct?

Response to your request

4i) The answer to your question is it asks NHS Boards to identify funding from external third parties to cover the cost of a function delivered by the post.

4ii) The answer to your question is that the board is reporting on what it has spent.

4iii) Please see the answers above.
 
(5) Your request

You asked for “5. In these RA&E reports under Table 2c it states.

Provide:

• a separate breakdown of individual posts and other costs together with details of grade of staff, FTE and expenditure against these. This should be able to be cross referenced with:

• a separate R&D management structure diagram together with a brief description of roles.

Please could you send me this information for each NHS Boards.

Response to your request

I enclose a copy of most of the information you requested. [See Attachment 02]

Please note that the reporting format was changed in 2017-18 and is expected to fully transition to a new format from 2018-19.

(6) Your request

You asked for “6. NRS Networks: with reference to the Cancer, Stroke, Children’s and Mental Health research networks what are their individual objectives please for each network and please provide information as to how you have measured performance against these objectives since inception”.

Response to your request

I enclose a copy of the information you requested. [See Attachment 03a and 3b]

(7) Your request

You asked for “7. There is a long section in each RA&E report “Part D – Progress against objectives” across the 12 NHS Boards this is c. 150+ pages please could you send me the CSO board report for last year or high level information provided to the Head of the CSO and/or Chief Scientist reporting on performance by the different NHS boards and any minutes from these review meetings that might include action points for any of the under -performing metrics at the boards”.

Response to your request

I enclose a copy of most of the information you requested. [See Attachment 04]

Please note that the reporting format was changed in 2017-18 and is expected to fully transition to a new format from 2018-19.

(8) Your request

You asked for “8. If you have a latest 2017-2018 outturn report for the last year please also forward it”.
 
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide the information you have requested because an exemption(s) under section(s) Section 27(1) – information intended for future publication of FOISA applies to that information. The reasons why that exemption applies are explained below.
 
Enclosures: 

Attachment 01 – 2017-18 Research Expenditure Reports

Attachment 02 – 2016-17 management structure and expenditure

Attachment 03a – 2018-19 SLA Documents

Attachment 03b – Reporting Template

Attachment 04 – 2016-17 NHS Boards reporting information
 
Reasons for not providing information
 
Question 02 – Information not held

Please note that the reporting format was changed for 2017-18 and is expected to fully transition to a new format from 2018-19. As such, some of the information you have requested was not required as part of the submission in 2017-18 and therefore not held by the Scottish Government.

Question 03 – Information already provided

The question raised seeks an opinion on how a subjective assessment is made. These assessments are not undertaken by the Scottish Government rather NHS Boards who provide the reporting information to the Scottish Government. The Scottish Government has previously provided information in the form for Activity and Expenditure reports which detail the guidance on completion provided to the NHS Boards.

Question 05 – Information not held

Please note that the reporting format was changed for 2017-18 and is expected to fully transition to a new format from 2018-19. As such, some of the information you have requested was not required as part of the submission in 2017-18 and therefore not held by the Scottish Government.

Question 07 – Information not held

Please note that the reporting format was changed for 2017-18 and is expected to fully transition to a new format from 2018-19. As such, some of the information you have requested was not required as part of the submission in 2017-18 and therefore not held by the Scottish Government.
 
Question 08 - An exemption applies, subject to the public interest test

An exemption under section 27(1) of FOISA applies to the information requested because we intend to publish that information on 28 September 2018 which is within 12 weeks of the date of your request. We consider that it is reasonable to withhold the information until that date, rather than release this routinely published information before the planned publication date.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is some public interest in release because the need to ensure transparency on the use of limited public funds, and this will be met by our planned publication. In the meantime, there is a greater public interest in taking the time necessary to ensure the information has been properly collated and checked before it is published as planned. Also, we see no public interest in disrupting our programme of work to release the information ahead of the intended publication date.
 

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at https://www.gov.scot/foi-responses

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference 
Central Enquiry Unit 
Email: [ceu@gov.scot](mailto:ceu@gov.scot) 
Phone: 0300 244 4000 
The Scottish Government 
St Andrew's House 
Regent Road 
Edinburgh 
EH1 3DG