In­de­pen­dent of­fi­cer to sup­port whistle­blow­ers

The Courier & Advertiser (Dundee Edition) - - NEWS -

NHS whistle­blow­ers who are not sat­is­fied with in­ter­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tions will soon have sup­port from an in­de­pen­dent whistle­blow­ing of­fi­cer.

The In­de­pen­dent Na­tional Whistle­blow­ing Of­fi­cer (INWO), said to be a UK first, will act un­der the aus­pices of the Scot­tish Pub­lic Ser­vices Om­buds­man (SPSO) with statu­tory pow­ers to help whistle­blow­ers.

The INWO will also ex­am­ine health boards’ cul­ture and ap­proach to whistle­blow­ing – par­tic­u­larly where a whistle­blower claims to have been un­fairly treated af­ter rais­ing a con­cern.

Health Sec­re­tary Shona Ro­bi­son said: “The In­de­pen­dent Na­tional Whistle­blow­ing Of­fi­cer will give staff the abil­ity to ac­cess an in­de­pen­dent, ex­ter­nal body who can re­view their case and bring it to a clear, fi­nal and fair con­clu­sion.”

Rose­mary Agnew, the Scot­tish Pub­lic Ser­vices Om­buds­man, said: “My aim is to en­sure stan­dards are con­sis­tent, prop­erly ap­plied and re­sult in fair out­comes, while also pro­vid­ing the nec­es­sary safe­guard­ing of pa­tients, and those rais­ing the com­plaints.”

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