An independent national officer for whistleblowing in Scotland’s NHS has been launched.
The newly-created position of Independent National Whistleblowing Officer (INWO) will be filled by Rosemary Agnew, who is also the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman.
She will be able to investigate complaints that have been through the local whistleblowing process at NHS boards.
New rules mean all NHS organisations must have procedures in place which allow staff, students, volunteers and others to raise concerns.
The INWO will act as a third and final review stage for these concerns.
Ms Agnew said: “The NHS in Scotland relies on staff, students and volunteers to deliver a wide range of services.
“They are essential to the delivery of safe care and treatment and good governance.
“They are also best placed to spot errors, wrong-doing or processes that put patients at unnecessary risk.
“We need to listen to them, but in order to do that we must give each and every one of them the space, opportunity and confidence to speak up.
“We want NHS staff to feel they can raise issues, safe in the knowledge they will be listened to and their concerns acted on promptly and confidentially.
“We also want to ensure that NHS organisations value the raising of concerns as a source of learning for continuous improvement.”
The INWO provides a free advice telephone line on 0800 008 6112 for those who want to raise complaints.