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Nicola Sturgeon urged to scrap plans for National Care Service over cost warnings

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Nicola Sturgeon has been urged to scrap plans to create a National Care Service amid uncertainty over how much it will cost.Alex Cole-Hamilton claimed that centralising care services - which are currently overseen by local authorities - would create a "billion pound bureaucracy" at a time public spending was already being cut.

The Scottish Lib Dem leader said it would be "unthinkable" for the Scottish Government to pursue its flagship health policy given the pressures already facing the NHS.

Former SNP health secretary Alex Neil earlier this month branded plans for a National Care Service as "nonsensical".Cole-Hamilton said: "Council leaders, legal experts, former health secretaries, trade unions, leading economists, SNP backbenchers, human rights watchdogs, health board bosses – that’s just small selection of those who have spoken out against this government’s plans for social care over the past few weeks."Without enormous pressure on public funds, it is unthinkable that the Scottish Government could plough ahead with measures that are at best, a billion-pound bureaucracy and at worst, a blank cheque."Nicola Sturgeon must order her ministers to stop work on these plans and send the money to where it is needed the most.

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