NHS Tay­side chiefs ‘very con­cerned’ at TV claims

Bosses ad­dress is­sues raised in doc­u­men­tary

Perthshire Advertiser - - FRONT PAGE - Me­lanie Bonn

NHS Tay­side in­sists it will take ac­tion to ad­dress con­cerns raised in a BBC doc­u­men­tary broad­cast ear­lier this week.

‘Break­ing Point’, aired on Tues­day night by BBC One Scot­land, gave har­row­ing views of be­ing a pa­tient at Dundee’s men­tal health fa­cil­ity, Car­se­view Cen­tre.

And NHS Tay­side chair­man John Brown en­deav­oured to show the board was tak­ing note of the BBC’s ‘Break­ing Point’ tes­ti­mo­ni­als, which de­scribed il­le­gal drugs on wards, ex­ces­sive force to re­strain pa­tients and a cul­ture of bul­ly­ing at the 80-bed adult men­tal health fa­cil­ity.

Al­though lo­cated in Dundee, con­di­tions on the psy­chi­atric ward will soon have an im­pact on Perthshire pa­tients as it will be their only place for emer­gency ad­mis­sion in cri­sis sit­u­a­tions.

Car­se­view Cen­tre cur­rently has 1100 pa­tient ad­mis­sions a year from the Tay­side area, but this is set to rise with the clo­sure of Mur­ray Royal’s More­dun B ward.

Mr Brown said: “I have now seen the BBC re­port on the Car­se­view Cen­tre and I re­main very con­cerned about the claims made by the pa­tients and fam­ily mem­bers fea­tured in the pro­gramme.

“As a board, we are ad­dress­ing the con­cerns raised and ac­tively in­ves­ti­gat­ing the pa­tient ex­pe­ri­ences which have been shared with us.”

He con­tin­ued: “I vis­ited Car­se­view ear­lier to­day [Wednes­day, July 11] and spoke to pa­tients and staff about their ex­pe­ri­ences.

“It is im­por­tant to say that our staff do work very hard and we are en­sur­ing that they have all the sup­port they need to be able to de­liver the best care for our pa­tients. How­ever, the claims must be in­ves­ti­gated and that is our pri­or­ity.”

A ded­i­cated email point of con­tact has been set up for peo­ple to get in touch to share their ex­pe­ri­ences, at men­tal­health.tay­side@nhs.net

In the af­ter­math of the show, a state­ment re­leased the morn­ing fol­low­ing the BBC broad­cast ex­plained NHS Tay­side’s re­sponse.

It read: “NHS Tay­side has taken a num­ber of im­me­di­ate ac­tions to­day to ur­gently ad­dress the con­cerns raised, in­clud­ing:

“A re­view of the data on re­straint used across men­tal health ser­vices, in­clud­ing in the Car­se­view Cen­tre, to bet­ter un­der­stand when and how dif­fer­ent types of re­straint are used; a for­mal meet­ing with Po­lice Scot­land and the chair­man to dis­cuss the con­cerns re­lat­ing to peo­ple bring­ing drugs into Car­se­view, what we are do­ing in part­ner­ship to tackle the is­sue and the launch of a new ini­tia­tive in the com­ing weeks; the ap­point­ment of an as­so­ciate med­i­cal di­rec­tor for men­tal health ser­vices, Pro­fes­sor Keith Matthews, to strengthen the lead­er­ship team and work with front­line teams to im­prove ser­vices and the ap­point­ment of David Strang, the for­mer HM Chief In­spec­tor of Pris­ons, as the chair­man of the in­de­pen­dent in­quiry into men­tal health ser­vices in Tay­side.”

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