NHS told to apologise for doctor's ‘dismissive and derogatory language’

A patient complained after being treated disrespectfully while attending an appointment with NHS Lothian.

NHS Lothian told to apologise for doctor’s ‘dismissive and derogatory language’ iStock

An NHS board has been ordered to apologise for a doctor’s “dismissive, derogatory and unprofessional language” towards a patient.

The medic’s behaviour impacted on the patient’s treatment with clinical records showing a disrespectful attitude towards them.

The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO) instructed NHS Lothian to apologise to the patient, referred to as C to protect their anonymity.

Patient C complained about the doctor after an inpatient appointment saying they had treated them in “a dismissive, derogatory and unprofessional manner”.

The watchdog found that the doctor’s documentation lacked a clear clinical rationale for the decisions that they made about C’s diagnosis and medication.

The SPSO heard that the actions of the doctor in question had resulted in C not receiving a reasonable standard of care.

However, the watchdog found that board staff had ensured the patient’s needs were met and that the decision to discharge them was “reasonable”.

Dr Tracey Gillies, medical director at NHS Lothian, said: “We expect a high standard of professionalism and respect from our staff when delivering care and we apologise that this patient’s experience fell short of that.

“We acknowledge the recommendations and the SPSO will be kept updated on implementation.”

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