"Ward 61 , Glasgow Royal Infirmary"

About: Glasgow Royal Infirmary / Trauma & orthopaedics

(as a relative),

Mum was admitted week before Christmas following fracture to Ward 61 ( Orthopaedic Trauma Ward).

Acknowledge that holiday period is difficult to ensure continuity, communication and coordination of care but felt all of these were lacking.

Ward policy of 2 to bed understandable given nature of care setting, but there was no flexibility/ alternatives. For example day room, where family time could be spent together. Mum was widowed 3 months prior to admission, so Christmas was planned on being special family time, surrounded by grandchildren, but ward policy was inflexible and took no account of the spiritual/ emotional needs of the patient at that time. Mum was not a Glasgow resident, and family had to travel at least 50 miles round journey to visit. This again, was not taken into consideration.

One example: on day of admission, after travelling from Edinburgh, via mums house to pick up toiletries etc. , I finally arrived on the ward with my husband at 8. 30pm ( end of visiting). As we walked in, Staff Nurse Looked up at clock and raised eyebrows. I quickly said who we were, how far we had travelled and that we would just be dropping things off and popping in for 10 minutes. No 'Can I help you' or similar, was offered. Just one example of what I feel was a lack of compassionate care.

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Response from Craig White, Divisional Clinical Lead, Directorate of Health Quality and Strategy, Scottish Government

picture of Craig White

Dear Hcp62,

Thank you for making contact with me after you noticed I had circulated details (on social media) recently of a video that outlined how Patient Opinion can be an effective mechanism to receive and respond to feedback on health and care services.

Understandably you replied 'Patient Opinion is not all that it's made out to be. No reply to post in 5 months. #really disappointed.' I asked if you could send me the link to what you posted, and am grateful to you for doing that.

I was saddened to read of yours and the wider family experience, particularly that you did not experience the arrangements to be with your mum to be flexible or centred around the clear needs that you have outlined. I would have expected colleagues at NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde to have responded promptly with an apology at the very least, and perhaps to provide some explanation of how they are seeking to ensure that people experience consistently compassionate, flexible and person-centred approaches to hospital visiting.

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde have been leading the way across the country in respect of a range of work in this area, so it is particularly disappointing that you distress has been further compounded by a lack of response.

Nationally we have been supporting colleagues across NHS Scotland to identify the benefits for people of such a person-centred approach to visiting, including encouragement to use this video to support local dialogue: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQPFJRsWNjM

I am sorry your experience was as you have outlined - and very sorry that your disappointment has been compounded by there being no response in over 5 months. As soon as you made me aware of this situation, I alerted the Director responsible at NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde for links with Patient Opinion.

I would very much like to see you receive a response to the issues you raised, an apology for the failure to reply and details of the work that is being undertaken to support Patient Opinion as one of the range of ways that people can provide feedback on how they have experienced NHS Scotland's care and services.

We want to support NHS Boards to continuously improve their processes for seeking and responding to feedback. This was one of the reasons that I visited all Boards in Scotland earlier this year to understand what more could be done to improve the ways that Patient Opinion can be used. All Boards, including NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, were keen to learn from where Patient Opinion is working well. I will make sure that your experience of using Patient Opinion and any learning that can be identified from reflection on how this could have happened will inform our work nationally.

In addition to my response to your personal situation, it concerns me deeply that 465 people have read of your experience and they too will have noted that there has been no reply from the Board. This is not reflective of our national policy commitments that recognise patient experience as a key factor that determines the reputation of the NHS in Scotland.

Collectively we must do better - I will make sure that me and colleagues working in this area do all that we can to support a more consistent approach across the country when people have taken the time to tells us of their experiences (good or bad).

I receive personal alerts every time someone provides feedback or a Board responds to a posting on Patient Opinion. I will be keeping a keen eye out this coming week for a response from colleagues.

With best regards and thanks again for bringing this to my attention,

Professor Craig A White

Divisional Clinical Lead, The Quality Unit

Scottish Government Health and Social Care Directorates

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Response from Paul Cannon, Head of Administration, Acute Services Division, Greater Glasgow & Clyde NHS

Dear hcp62

I am very sorry that we failed to acknowledge your posting when it arrived around 5 months ago. I appreciate it will be of little consolation to know that we did however share it with the appropriate service manager and invited the service to feed back to us. We failed to follow this up and your post was not updated. For this I am sorry, and I am grateful to Professor White to posting this out so that we can address this.

I can only echo the sentiments expressed by Professor White about the circumstances encountered. Our Visiting Policy is, as Professor White says, groundbreaking and we would like to think this exemplifies an enlightened approach. However, it is also clear that we failed to deliver this aspiration at what must have been a difficult time for you and your family.

We remain committed to responding to postings on Patient Opinion as a valuable source of feedback of our services and I would like to reassure you that we did not ignore your comments.

Thank you for raising this with us.

Kind Regards

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