'Intimidating' response to clinician's claims - say NHS hospital governors
GOVERNORS have blasted the Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust's reaction to an outspoken consultant who criticised its care.
A clinician working in the county spoke out anonymously last month, saying nurses were 'too busy' to feed a recovering stroke patient.
The whistle blower's comments provoked a fierce reaction from NHS health bosses in Gloucestershire.
The clinician, who works in Gloucestershire Hospitals broke ranks to say he 'feared' for both county hospitals claiming they were 'hopelessly mismanaged'.
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At Monday night's council of governors meeting, Trust chief executive Dr Frank Harsent was criticised for his reaction to the outburst by Cheltenham governor Julius Marstrand.
"We were shown copies of the press release before it was made public and it was threatening, it was bullying and it was intimidating," he said.
"The consultant was accused of being unprofessional for speaking out, and that was wrong.
"The media release should have been retracted."
A Trust spokesman said: "We would like to clarify that the 'press release' Mr Marstrand referred to at the Council of Governors was supplied solely to the BBC and was sent to our Governors as a courtesy.
"With regard to the issue about a malnourished patient, our main concern was to investigate this case, we were unable to find any matching record of a concern having been raised through our internal channels or reporting systems.
"We are absolutely clear the quality of care provided to patients, their safety and experience in our hospitals is of the utmost importance to us.
"When anyone suspects poor care is being delivered, it is vital this is reported as soon as possible."
Read more in tomorrow's Echo and Citizen.