"Small gestures can make a big difference"

About: Glasgow Royal Infirmary

(as a relative),

Last Friday, my partner and I had to take time off work to take his father to an outpatient appointment in the Pancreatic clinic area A at the GRI to see the consultant to receive test results and a treatment plan for the cyst identified on the scan. The clinic was very very busy, and very hot, and we were informed when we arrived that the clinic was running at least 45 minutes behind. Although we were annoyed at the clinic running behind, the nursing and auxilliary staff tried to make it as pleasant an experience as possible. They offered everyone waiting cold water, then came around about 15 minutes later and offered cups of tea or coffee to those still waiting.

I found that these small gestures made our wait bearable, and would like to thank the staff in the clinic area for taking the time to acknowledge their patients and offer a small gesture of kindness. Simple things like that make such a difference to so many people, so thank you.

More about:
Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››


Response from Lorna Gray, Patient Experience, Public Involvement Project Manager, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde

Dear christine345,

Thank you for taking the time to let me know of your experience at this Outpatient Clinic. We are aware that there can be issues with delayed appointments at Outpatient Clinics for various reasons, however your post highlights the difference that effective communication can have for our patients if they experience this. Commonly it is not necessarily the delay that frustrates people, but a lack of information about why or how long they are expected to wait.

As you point out, small actions make a big difference. That the staff not only kept their patients and their families informed, but endeavoured to keep them comfortable too is a fantastic example of how such delays can be managed more effectively. I will pass your comments on to this team who I'm sure will be really pleased to receive such positive feedback and will also take this on board as an example of good practice to be shared throughout the Board.

Thank you again for taking the time to get in touch,

Best Wishes,


  • {{helpful}} {{helpful == 1 ? "person thinks" : "people think"}} this response is helpful