Radical change needed at BGH - MSP
Christine Grahame MSP.
CONCERNS have been voiced over the way older patients are cared for at the biggest hospital in the Borders.
Healthcare Improvement Scotland identified 13 areas for improvement following a recent inspection at Borders General Hospital near Melrose.
It found that the dignity of patients was not always appropriately maintained and staff sometimes used inappropriate language when speaking about them.
The report also noted occasions when the needs of patients were not put first, with some being moved a number of times during their stay in the hospital, sometimes late at night, and concluded that the hospital was not dementia friendly.
Politicians this week condemned the findings and demanded radical action.
Local MSP Christine Grahame, convenor of the Scottish Parliament's health committee, said: "It must be a cause for concern that no fewer than 13 areas of concern have been identified and which need to be addressed so that the BGH can meet official NHS standards. I sincerely hope, and would expect that senior health officials in the Borders will afford the recommendations contained in this document top priority.
"To learn that the dignity of some patients was not being maintained during visits to the toilet is another cause for concern.
"I do accept that there are four areas of strength outlined in the document, not least the standard of the meals. But inevitably it is the negatives which make the headlines and there appears to be a need for radical changes to a number of procedures within the hospital."
Health chiefs welcomed the report which it claimed showed "real progress" at the BGH.
However, the local health board revealed it has developed an improvement action plan to address the concerns raised.
NHS Borders chief executive Calum Campbell said: "The inspection was very detailed and we have taken a lot of positives from it. The report shows that real progress has been made and that we have the processes, procedures and structures in place to provide appropriate care for our older patients.
"These inspections are always very valuable and whilst real progress has been demonstrated, we will continue to develop our services to further improve the care of older people."
This article appeared in Border Telegraph 19 Sep 12
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