NHS Tayside financial governance arrangements: independent review

An independent review by Grant Thornton UK LLP on agreed areas of NHS Tayside financial governance arrangements between the financial years 2012/13 – 2017/18.

Appendix 2: Public Sector principles and codes of conduct

Within the Public Sector, and also specifically in the NHS in Scotland there are a number of overarching public life principles that apply throughout, and are accepted ethical principles and behaviours. It is expected that everyone working in the public sector adhere to these principles, and there are also additional considerations if you are a Non-Executive member of the Board or in a senior leadership role.

The 7 principles of public life (Nolan)




Holders of office should act solely in terms of the public interest


Holders of public office must avoid placing themselves under any obligation to people or organisations that might try inappropriately to influence them in their work. They should not act or take decisions in order to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves, their family, or their friends. They must declare and resolve any interests and relationships


Holders of public office must act and take decisions impartially, fairly and on merit, using the best evidence and without discrimination or bias.


Holders of public officer are accountable to the public for their decisions and actions and must submit themselves to the scrutiny necessary to ensure this


Holders of public office should act and take decisions in an open and transparent manner. Information should not be withheld from the public unless there are clear and lawful reasons for doing so


Holders of public office should be truthful


Holders of public office should exhibit these principles in their own behaviour. They should actively promote and robustly support the principles and be willing to challenge poor behaviour whenever it occurs.

NHS Board Non-Executive Appointment

On appointment to an NHS Board the appointment letter states:

"All members must abide by the principles of collective responsibility and are expected to bring an impartial judgement to bear on the business of the Board"

NHS Tayside Section B Members Code of Conduct

NHS Tayside have in place in Section in its code of conduct for Members of the NHS Tayside Board and its committees which all Non-Executive Board members are made aware of. The code states that "as a member of the NHS Tayside Board it is your responsibility to make sure you know you are familiar with, and your actions comply with, the provisions of this code of conduct"

This code in section 2 outlines the Nolan principles, and also cross references to the Scottish Government Publication "On Board – A guide for Board members of public bodies in Scotland"

Section 5 outlines declaration of interests and in particular 5.5 "As a member of the Tayside NHS Board you might serve on other bodies. In relation to service on Board's and management committees of limited liability companies, public bodies, societies, and other organisations, you must decide, in the particular circumstances surrounding any matter, whether to declare an interest. Only if you believe that, in the particular circumstances, the nature of the interest is so remote or without significant, should it not be declared."


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