Independent inquiry receives hundreds of written submissions
The independent inquiry into Tayside mental-health services is to ramp up its investigation after receiving hundreds of public submissions.
Inquiry chairman David Strang has revealed he and his team have received more than 200 written submissions after issuing a call for evidence on September 5.
Of those, 50 were submitted within the first week.
In addition, more than 50 requests to give verbal evidence have been received since the call for interviews went out on October 1.
So far, 24 interviews have been carried out.
The inquiry will now look to be more “proactive” in its approach to assessing mentalhealth services in the region, according to Mr Strang.
Inquiry members intend to meet healthcare workers such as doctors, student nurses and psychologists in the new year in an effort to build a more complete picture of Tayside’s services – both positive and negative.
Mr Strang said: “It’s been quite passive on our part, so far, so we now have a plan to be more proactive.
“It feels to us a responsibility because people are looking forward to our conclusions.”
The inquiry was set up after several suicides of people who had used Tayside mental-health services. Relatives of a number of people who took their own lives are continuing to press for a full public inquiry.
The inquiry is operating independently of NHS Tayside and the Scottish Government – but NHS staff are being asked for their views.
NHS Tayside is continuing to pursue a pre-planned shake-up of its mental-health services while the probe continues.
Chairman John Brown said: “Since we commissioned the independent inquiry, we have always said that one of the most critical parts of the work was ensuring that those people with real, lived experiences of mental-health services would have a strong voice.
“I’d like to thank the alliance on behalf of the board for leading this work.”
Inquiry chairman David Strang.