HEALTH MAT­TERS

Macclesfield Express - - MACCLESFIELD PEOPLE -

●● DR Paul Bowen (left) is a GP with McIlvride Med­i­cal Prac­tice, Poyn­ton, and ex­ec­u­tive chair of NHS East­ern Cheshire Clin­i­cal Com­mis­sion­ing Group (CCG): MARK Twain once said he could ‘live for two months on a good com­pli­ment.’

The same could be said for NHS staff. Hav­ing pre­vi­ously writ­ten in this col­umn about the value and power of com­plaints, I want to take a slightly more pos­i­tive an­gle.

Thanks and com­pli­ments shower our lo­cal NHS. Th­ese in­for­mal thank yous come in the form of choco­lates, Christ­mas cards to surg­eries and, most com­monly, ver­bal grat­i­tude ex­pressed by thank­ful pa­tients and car­ers in clin­ics, wards and homes ev­ery day. But th­ese com­pli­ments usu­ally go un­logged, un­recorded and are there­fore swiftly can­celled out by the hec­tic work­load and less fre­quent, but more for­mal com­plaints that ar­rive in our in­boxes.

Con­cerns about morale among GPs, ju­nior doc­tors, nurses and con­sul­tants have been mak­ing head­lines in re­cent times. How­ever, I can as­sure you that a for­mal com­pli­ment has a won­der­ful ef­fect. While our pro­fes­sions strug­gle with the political, eco­nomic and reg­u­la­tory pres­sures on the NHS, a com­pli­ment grounds us and re­minds us why we spend th­ese long, stress­ful days (and for many col­leagues, nights) in the NHS rather than pur­sue a dif­fer­ent call­ing. This in turn helps re­ten­tion of good staff and re­cruit­ment to lo­cal care ser­vices.

If you feel your care has been worth it, I’d like to urge you to con­sider com­pli­ment­ing your nurse or doc­tor, a clinic or surgery, a trust or depart­ment, on any good care you have re­ceived. Cards and let­ters are tra­di­tional, and ap­pre­ci­ated, but it is of­ten eas­ier to do so on­line at NHS Choices where you can search for the or­gan­i­sa­tion you’d like to say thank you to.

We are thank­fully, via a com­plaint, told where we have done some­thing wrong. This helps us change for the bet­ter. How­ever, when we do things right, it’s just as help­ful to know that we must keep go­ing and not stop do­ing what we do well.

And one last thing… thank YOU for read­ing this and con­sid­er­ing the point I make above!

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