Glasgow & West Scotland

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde criticised for treatment time

Hospital Image copyright Getty

Scotland's largest health board has been criticised for breaching the Treatment Time Guarantee.

A patient who complained to the Public Services Ombudsman waited seven months for an appointment with a specialist.

He eventually had to organise private treatment after further failures by the NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) board to arrange an operation.

According to the government's Treatment Time Guarantee, operations should be arranged within 12 weeks.

However, NHSGGC said it could not meet that, citing a staffing issue.

The patient, known only as Mr. A., was referred to a specialist after suffering severe incontinence following cancer surgery, but his appointment did not take place until seven months after he had complained about the lengthy wait.

The ombudsman said this was "unreasonable" and the board had not adequately communicated with Mr. A.

NHSGGC was ordered partially to reimburse the patient for his treatment and told it should have arranged treatment with an alternative provider.

In a statement, the health board said: "The vast majority of our patients are seen, have appropriate tests undertaken and treatment started within their guaranteed time of 12 weeks.

"Unfortunately, a number of patients who require particular specialist treatments, including urology, are waiting longer than we would like, and we apologise for this.

"We have put a number of measures in place to alleviate this, and we are working with colleagues in hospitals across the board area to offer patients the earliest available dates for their treatment.

A spokeswoman added that the board accepted the Ombudsman's recommendations, and apologised to the patient for the failings identified.

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