Doctors ‘buoyed’ after bullying talks with health secretary

Hundreds of NHS Highland staff have found new jobs since bullying claims broke.

Doctors demanding urgent action to tackle bullying at NHS Highland have held “positive” talks with Scotland’s health secretary.

Hundreds of staff have reported suffering bullying within the service, while many have quit their jobs or transferred elsewhere within the NHS.

Whistleblowers emerged from a 30-minute meeting in Inverness with Jeane Freeman on Friday morning “buoyed” by their discussions.

They focused on the pace of change and a simpler process for victims to claim compensation.

An independent review by QC and mediator John Sturrock, published in May last year, acknowledged the problem at the health board.

The meeting was shortened to allow the health secretary to return to Edinburgh to deal with the coronavirus outbreak.

Meanwhile, NHS Highland has appointed a new interim chief executive after Iain Stewart – who came in after the bullying revelations – moved to NHS Orkney.

Paul Hawkins, who has been chief executive of NHS Fife for five years, will take temporary charge from Monday.

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