A LEADING nursing union has written to demand the Scottish Government pulls the brakes on its controversial National Care Service plans.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Scotland has called on ministers to hold a meeting with the union to discuss its members’ “serious concerns” about the plans.

The Scottish Government has been heavily criticised by trade unions and MSPs from all parties over the plans.

First Minister Humza Yousaf has also expressed doubts about the proposals telling Holyrood magazine he would be willing to “compromise” on parts of the bill opposed by unions and some critics within his party.

Eileen Mckenna, associate director of nursing, policy and professional practice at RCN Scotland, called on the Government to speak with nurses and those working in social care to discuss concerns about the National Care Service.

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The RCN has written to social care minister Maree Todd to request a meeting and express concern that the bill as it stands “lacks fundamental detail”.

Mckenna called the Government’s current plans “expensive and disruptive structural overhaul” and claimed they failed to “fix the current problems” facing the social care sector.

She said: “We welcome the minister to her new role and have requested a meeting to discuss our serious concerns about the National Care Service Bill.

“We are calling for the Scottish Government to take time to engage with stakeholders - including staff working at all levels within the social care and community health sectors - and to develop detailed plans for reform prior to taking forward primary legislation.

READ MORE: SNP trade union group call for pause to National Care Service plans

“Rather than simply pushing through expensive and disruptive structural overhaul without a clear understanding of how to fix the current problems facing the sector, ministers need to focus now on tackling the workforce crisis in social care and community health.

“Services must have the right numbers of staff, with the right skills, in the right place and that needs to start with increased investment and improving pay, terms and conditions in the sector.”

A recent report from the public spending watchdog Audit Scotland found the estimated costs of the project were "significantly understated".