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  1. Nine new junior ministers appointed as Nicola Sturgeon finalises her reshuffle
  2. Yesterday the first minister confirmed her new cabinet, which was expanded to 12
  3. The environment and rural committees takes evidence from Michael Gove on Brexit
  4. The housing minister delivers a statement on homelessness
  5. MSPs debate the Prescription (Scotland) Bill
  6. The parliament votes on sanctions for Mark McDonald MSP

Live Reporting

By Craig Hutchison and Louise Wilson

All times stated are UK

  1. That's all from Holyrood Live!

    First minister and her junior team

    That is all from the Holyrood Live team on Wednesday 27 June 2018.

    Nicola Sturgeon's major reshuffle of her government continued with nine new junior ministers being selected.

    The first minister announced sweeping changes to her cabinet on Tuesday, with Shona Robison and Keith Brown among the biggest names leaving the top team.

    Changes continued on Wednesday with the new junior ministers which included seven first elected in 2016.

    All new ministerial appointments will be subject to a vote of parliament on Thursday afternoon.

  2. 'The NHS has always faced challenges from its earliest days until the present'

    Ms Freeman

    "The NHS has always faced challenges, from its earliest days until the present," says Ms Freeman.

    There is no doubt that the way we deliver health in Scotland must continue to evolve and improve, she states.

    The minister says work is well underway at a national and regional level to implement proposals to increase the pace of improvement.

    Delayed discharge has been reducing Ms Freeman states but she accepts there is room for improvement.

    Delivering improved population health is one of the central themes of the Scottish government's plan, she says.

    Ms Freeman concludes by paying tribute to her successor Shona Robison, as well as former mental health minister Maureen Watt.

  3. Background: The NHS at 70: Send us your pictures

    Old photograph of NHS ward

    The National Health Service is turning 70 years old on 5 July this year - and we want to hear from you.

    Hospitals, doctors, nurses, pharmacists, opticians and dentists were brought together in 1948 to provide services free at the point of delivery.

    We're looking for your photographs and memories from around Scotland, telling us how the NHS has helped you or changed your life.

    You can send them to us at with the subject NHS at 70 - and we will create a gallery of your stories.

    Click here for more photos and the terms and conditions.

  4. Health secretary designate Jeane Freeman praises NHS staff past and present

    Health secretary designate Jeane Freeman
    Image caption: Health secretary designate Jeane Freeman

    Soon to be Health Secretary Jeane Freeman thanks all the members who contributed to this debate, thanking in particular Emma Harper, Sandra White and Jeremy Balfour for sharing such personal but important stories.

    Their stories encapsulate what the NHS means to so many people in Scotland, she says.

    I am absolutley delighted the first words I am saying in this chamber as health secretary designate are praise for the staff of the NHS past and present, Ms Freeman.

    The former social security minister says she looks forward to continuing the work of those that have gone before in the health portfolio and pledges to protect the NHS.

  5. Tory MSP tells chamber about his little girl born sleeping

    Tory MSP Jeremy Balfour reveals that he underwent surgery at just six months old.

    It was the first ever procedure of its kind, with the one finger he was born with being cut into two.

    "That innovation allowed me to be able to do so much more."

    Tory MSP Jeremy Balfour
    Image caption: Tory MSP Jeremy Balfour

    Mr Balfour goes on to emotionally tell the chamber about his experience when his "little girl was born asleep".

    "The worst moment in my life.

    "What I remember is not just the pain of her loss, but it is the care and love that was given by the midwives, by the nurses, by the auxiliaries to me and my wife.

    "The care and compassion is something which defines our NHS."

  6. SNP MSP emotionally contrasts working in US private healthcare with the NHS

    SNP MSP Emma Harper
    Image caption: SNP MSP Emma Harper

    SNP MSP Emma Harper gives an emotional speech relating her experiences of healthcare in the US and contrasting that with the NHS.

    The trained nurse explains she worked for 14 years in Los Angles as a transplant nurse.

    Ms Harper says: "It was that experience of working in private health care in the USA that truly showed me how essential and amazing our NHS is."

    She relates the awful conundrum people faced in America because they could not afford to get sick.

    Ms Harper relates her experience of having to pay for her care for her Type 1 diabetes and goes on to call the NHS a "natural treasure".

  7. NHS takes the strain of economy inequality says Green MSP

    Green MSP Alison Johnstone
    Image caption: Green MSP Alison Johnstone

    Green MSP Alison Johnstone says the NHS is an important part of national life in Scotland.

    Our health is being damaged by economic inequality and many other forms of discrimination and prejudice, she tells the chamber.

    The Green MSP says the NHS takes the strain for this.

    Ms Johnstone calls for social care to be made free at the point of access.

  8. Background: How Highlands poverty created the blueprint for the NHS

    Reevel Alderson

    BBC Scotland Social Affairs correspondent

    For 70 years the NHS has provided a "cradle to grave" health service throughout the UK, but many of its principles were forged in Scotland more than three decades earlier.

    Flora Ferguson, the first nurse in the Highlands to be given a motorbike by HIMS to help bring medical services to remote areas
    Image caption: Flora Ferguson, the first nurse in the Highlands to be given a motorbike by HIMS to help bring medical services to remote areas

    The story began in 1911 with the establishment of the National Insurance (NI) scheme, a system of health insurance and forerunner of the welfare state.

    It was based on contributions from employers, the government and workers themselves.

    But in the crofting counties of Scotland it did not cover most people, who were not formally employed, so had no employer to pay a contribution.

    Levels of poverty in the north of Scotland were high and health provision was patchy, says Colin Waller, retired archivist at the Highland Archive in Inverness.

    Read more.

  9. Background: NHS Scotland staff offered 9% pay rise over three years

    Hospital ward

    The bulk of NHS staff in Scotland have been offered a 9% pay rise, spread across three years.

    The offer, to staff like nurses and midwives who earn under £80,000 a year, is being considered by NHS unions.

    Scottish Health Secretary Shona Robison said she was "proud" to be offering a pay rise which "not only matches the NHS England deal, but exceeds it".

    The offer would not affect doctors, dentists or senior managers. Staff consultations will run until 15 August.

    Read more here.

  10. 'Innovation will be the key to the future of the NHS'

    Labour MSP David Stewart
    Image caption: Labour MSP David Stewart

    Labour MSP David Stewart welcomes the new health team - Jeane Freeman, Joe Fitzpatrick and Clare Haughey - to the chamber.

    Mr Stewart calls for urgent workforce planning to respond to a health crisis.

    He highlights inequality is a significant indicator for poor health, adding that health outcomes between the rich and poor has widened.

    "Innovation will be the key to the future of the NHS."

    New Health Secretary Jeane Freeman with new ministerial colleagues Joe Fitzpatrick and Clare Haughey
    Image caption: New Health Secretary Jeane Freeman with new ministerial colleagues Joe Fitzpatrick and Clare Haughey
  11. Tory MSP calls for the health of our healthcare professionals to be looked after

    Tory MSP Brian Whittle
    Image caption: Tory MSP Brian Whittle

    Tory MSP Brian Whittle begins by thanking Shona Robison for her help and assistance with constituency cases, saying "she was always willing to help".

    Mr Whittle says major change is underway and further change is now required in the NHS and prevention must move up the agenda.

    He calls for the health of our healthcare professionals to be looked after.

    Mr Whittle argues that in celebrating the NHS at 70, we should be looking ahead to the next 70 years.

  12. 'We must always seek ways to improve the NHS'

    SNP MSP Ruth Maguire
    Image caption: SNP MSP Ruth Maguire

    SNP MSP Ruth Maguire is opening the debate on behalf of Ash Denham - who was promoted to the role of Community Safety Minister earlier today.

    She highlights how the Highlands led on making healthcare affordable, with services being provided to those who couldn't afford it three decades before the NHS was established.

    The government is trusted by the electorate to continue and improve the NHS, she states.

    Ms Maguire insists the Scottish government has prioritised the health service.

    "We must always seek ways to improve the NHS and never shy away from our responsibilities."

    It is clear why the NHS is held in such high regard she concludes.

  13. Here are the MSPs who abstained from the vote to sanction Mark McDonald


    Beattie, Colin (Midlothian North and Musselburgh) (SNP)

    Coffey, Willie (Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley) (SNP)

    Fabiani, Linda (East Kilbride) (SNP)

    Gibson, Kenneth (Cunninghame North) (SNP)

    Grahame, Christine (Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale) (SNP)

    Mason, John (Glasgow Shettleston) (SNP)

  14. NHS at 70

    NHS 70

    SNP MSP Ash Denham leaders a debate on the NHS at 70.

    Ms Denham's motion
  15. BreakingMSPs vote to suspend Mark McDonald for one month

    Mark McDonald
    Image caption: Mark McDonald now faces a month's suspension.

    MSPs vote to suspend Mark McDonald for one month, with 101 MSPs voting for the sanction, zero against and with six abstentions.

    He will be suspended from Monday 3 September until Tuesday 2 October.

    They also unanimously back the general principles of the Prescription Bill.

  16. Point of order on NHS Lothian report

    Labour MSP Neil Findlay raises a point of order on a report from NHS Lothian.

    He suggests there was evidence of manipulation of waiting times and poor governance in the report.

    Mr Findlay calls for a ministerial statement to be made, suggesting there had been attempts to bury it by the reshuffle.

    Presiding officer Ken Macintosh tells the member that this should be brought up through the parliamentary bureau.

  17. Confidentiality breaches will be considered by standards committee

    SNP MSP James Dornan
    Image caption: SNP MSP James Dornan

    Mr Harvie says the committee expressed disappointment that details of the complaint were shared with the media by SNP MSP James Dornan.

    Confidentiality requirements have been breached more than once during the course of the investigation, he tells the chamber.

    These breaches will be looked into separately Mr Harvie confirms.

    Mr Harvie moves the motion on Mark McDonald which will be voted on at decision time.

  18. Committee unanimously endorsed finding of sexual harassment against Mark McDonald

    Scottish Green Party co-convener Patrick Harvie
    Image caption: Scottish Green Party co-convener Patrick Harvie

    Standards committee deputy convener Patrick Harvie speaks to the motion.

    Mr Harvie tells the chamber the Commissioner for Ethical Standards in Public Life found that Mr McDonald failed to treat one staff member with respect and that his behaviour was sexual harassment.

    Another staff member was found not to be treated with suspect.

    The committee unanimously endorsed the commissioner's conclusions.

  19. Background: Mark McDonald faces month suspension over sexual harassment

    Video content

    Video caption: 'I wish I could unsend that text, but I can't'

    An MSP faces being suspended from Holyrood for a month after he was found guilty of sexual harassment.

    Mark McDonald resigned as early years minister in November 2017 after he sent an "inappropriate" text message to a woman. He later quit the SNP.

    The Commissioner for Ethical Standards in Public Life concluded that the case amounted to sexual harassment.

    Holyrood's standards committee has now recommended Mr McDonald be suspended without pay for a month.

    The final decision on the sanction will be made by parliament as a whole, and the suspension period will not include the upcoming summer recess.

    Read more.