Gurnites will recall that the relationship between the Patients Participation Group and the Nairn Healthcare practice recently fell to pieces in controversial circumstances – see Gurn articles here and here. Chairing the meeting of Nairn’s three CCs last night in the Community and Arts Centre Dick Youngson revealed he had had a meeting with the doctors at the practice and he said:
“They want to work through us as the medium for an exchange of communication from the communities back to them and all their staff, especially the nurses that so expertly run the clinics. What they plan to do is give us the newsletters and the programmes by e-mail or post so that we as community councillors can work on that and spread the word amongst members of the communities and then come back to them; and at the same time they’ll have a programme about talking about all the clinics which they have and how they want to actually get people who might not realise that they have got diabetes or asthma or whatever to attend these very valuable clinics.
We’re in the unique position of having a practice linked with a hospital and all the clinics that go with it. Nowhere else really have they got that in Scotland at the moment. And we’ve got a practice that works, it’s on call 24 hours a day and seven days a week if there is an emergency call out. We’ve got to support our group of GPs - the whole two practices that came together and really the hospital: as you will see from some of the letters that come in from people that have been praising their stay in the hospital especially. It’s really up to us not to criticise them all the time but to find ways to actually helping them solve problems. There will always be mistakes and problems and what we want to do is keep these mistakes down to a minimum so this is what is proposed now. They won’t work with the former PPG but they will work with us. They’re offering the chance now of actually really quite a lot of constructive liason with us but we have to help them as much as them helping us.
So that is how it will work, I haven’t yet spoken or consulted with any of the other community councils but I will do so. I will set procedures for them, if they want to come on board that’s fine if they don’t well it’s their loss but they can’t complain. Ardersier certainly will, Croy will, Cawdor will[...]. It’s a completely different way of working for our community. "
Brian Stewart asked Dick if the PPG still existed. Dick replied:
“I can’t really speak for them but as far as the hospital were concerned it doesn’t exist as far as they are concerned – and the hospital being the practice.
Dick was asked how it would work if anyone had a complaint and he said that they should contact their community council in the same way they do for other problems. Jeff Baker also pointed out that there was an official NHS complaints procedure in existence. Graham Vine outlined his concern that the Nairn situation was unique as the practice were the only alternative for patients in Nairn and thus there needed to be a decent consultation process.