Unprecedented number of MSPs sign up to hear views on their local health services

At a parliamentary event this week, 43 MSPs have signed up to hear their constituents’ views of local health services, using the ground breaking, patient feedback website Patient Opinion.

Patient Opinion, the award winning website which supports public dialogue between patients and staff, is now available to all MSPs. They will be able to hear the experiences of local patients, see how local Health Boards are responding and respond directly themselves.

It is anticipated that MSPs will hear thousands of stories a year ranging from serious complaints about the health service to plaudits and compliments about health service staff going over the odds.

The move was backed by, Alex Neil, MSP and Cabinet Secretary for Health & Wellbeing, who said:

“We want to hear patient’s stories first hand in their own words, whether it’s good or bad, because it helps us to make our health services better, and Patient Opinion means that patients, carers and their families are able to let health boards know, openly and publically, how a service was for them and where it can improve.”

“Many of these stories can be inspirational and where our health professionals are doing a great job we want them to know about it.”

“This is another step forward in developing a culture of openness and transparency in NHS Scotland that actively welcomes feedback as a tool for continuous improvement.”

One of the MSPs who signed up was Dr Richard Simpson, from Mid Scotland and Fife region, said: “Learning from Patient feedback and experience is of supreme importance for improving the health service. Patient Opinion is a superb organisation, which makes a massive contribution to ensuring that happens.”

James Munro, Chief Executive of Patient Opinion, said: “Now MSPs can quickly and easily see what is working well and what isn’t, and whether their local health services are responding.

“Health policy in Scotland is about quality, safety, patient rights and person-centred care.”

“I think Scotland will go further, and faster, with Patient Opinion than other parts of the UK because of this. I think other parts of the UK should watch and learn from what you do here.”

 Ends

Notes to editors:

Patient Opinion is an independent website which enables patients to share stories about their care. Through Patient Opinion’s website, www.patientopinion.org, service users, carers and their families can comment on the care they have received from the NHS anonymously. These comments which can already be sent directly to the specific trust can now also go directly to local MPs, who then have the opportunity to publicly respond to the feedback of their constituents.

Alex Neil is currently a member of the Scottish Parliament for Airdrie & Shotts and Cabinet Secretary for Health & Wellbeing in the Scottish Government.

Dr Richard Simpson is currently member of the Scottish Parliament for Mid Scotland and Fife.

Over 90% of stories shared on Patient Opinion have been responded to. 8% of stories which were critical have led to planned or promised change.

Here are some stories shared on Patient Opinion across Scotland. The 43 signed up MSPs will receive patient stories like this with immediate effect date.

 

“Lack of signs to Ward 10” – https://www.patientopinion.org.uk/opinions/141088

“Lack of bladder scan after gynaecology surgery”

https://www.patientopinion.org.uk/opinions/121736

“Hospital hygiene and protocol”

https://www.patientopinion.org.uk/opinions/132880

“Elderly mother given appointment date for 10 months’ time!”

https://www.patientopinion.org.uk/opinions/135778

“My appointment procedure for the vascular clinic”

https://www.patientopinion.org.uk/opinions/133774