A report by Healthcare Improvement Scotland has highlighted the need for improvements in the way Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary treats older patients, but also flagged up “the incredible work of NHS staff”, according to South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth.
Commenting on the report the South Scotland MSP, who is also Scottish Labour’s Shadow Health Spokesperson on Social Care said, “This report raises a number of improvements needed, but at the same time highlights some of the incredible work of our NHS staff locally.
It is clear that the pressure on staff is starting to impact on patient care and this report is another warning sign that we cannot take the NHS staff for granted.
Staff are working immensely hard under the most difficult of pressure as Government cuts bite and we should be looking at ways to improve the way we support them make the changes and improvements needed. At a time of Scottish Government cuts to the health service, staff morale is at an all-time low and reports like this should be a wake-up call for the Government to better resources our hospitals.
However, it is worth noting that in compiling the report, Healthcare Improvement Scotland only actually spoke to a handful of patients at certain stages during this inspections, which raises questions over how they assess hospitals. It is important to inspect hospitals to see the impact of the cuts on services, but HIS need to ensure the data they collect fully reflects the views of patients”.
The report highlighted areas for improvement:
· In general, assessments were not always completed accurately and within the recommended standard timescales
· There was a lack of person-centred care plans
· There are concerns around the completion of the assessment of capacity to consent and staff understanding of Adults with Incapacity (AWI)
However, areas of good practice picked out by the watchdog were:
· Patients and relatives were complimentary about the care
· Patients were complimentary about the quality of food
· Staff felt supported by senior management
· There was good multi-disciplinary working
The full report can be read here: