NHS Scotland: the vital importance of listening to staff concerns

I have just heard Jane Grant, the Chief Executive of Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Board, interviewed on BBC Scotland. This was in relation to infection rates at The Royal Hospital for Children and the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital. A number of concerns had been raised through whistleblowing. The Chief Executive reassured parents over hospital infection rates.

Before taking over as Chief Executive of Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Board, Jane Grant was Chief Executive of NHS Forth Valley. I was working as a Consultant for NHS Forth Valley when Jane Grant was in office. During this time, I raised concerns about patient welfare and had also raised a petition with the Scottish Parliament about the need for transparency in relation to potential conflicts of interest in healthcare. The Chief Executive Officer recognised in a written response the “importance of a culture of openness and candour”. However she went on to give qualifications: that any concerns raised should be “appropriate” and “correct”.

The following year, a submission made by Jane Grant was considered at a Scottish Parliament Committee meeting in relation to a petition on whistleblowing in NHS Scotland:

Three years on, I am not convinced that there has been any change to the significant barriers NHS staff, patients, and parents face in raising concerns in NHS Scotland.

Footnote: my original post from April 2015 along with a follow-up from November 2016 can be read here.

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