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by Tom Freeman
18 June 2015
Dundee hospital safe but needs better communication, reports CMO

Dundee hospital safe but needs better communication, reports CMO

Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer has said a hospital accused of manipulating A&E figures provides a “safe and clinically appropriate” model of care.

Ninewells hospital in Dundee was under fire after a whistleblower accused NHS Tayside of manipulating waiting times at the accident and emergency department.

CMO Dr Catherine Calderwood visited the hospital this week at the request of Health Secretary Shone Robison.


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“I am satisfied that the current emergency department model of care is safe and clinically appropriate. The rates of patient satisfaction are very high,” she said, in a report published today.

Calderwood said there was no evidence to support the claims made by the whistleblowers.

“Following discussion with the emergency department multi-disciplinary team it is evident that the principles that underpin NHS Tayside's emergency department model are patient safety and outcome focused and not target-driven,” she said.

However, the health board needs to improve communication between professionals to promote a collaborative approach, she said, warning misunderstandings existed between departments.

Emergency department consultants should be involved in the induction of new medical, nursing and other healthcare staff to improve understanding of the operational procedures within A&E, the report recommends.

“Work is already underway within NHS Tayside to create a whole system approach to patient care. It is important that each individual unit or department sees themselves as part of the larger hospital team to ensure best patient care," said Calderwood.

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