Numbers game for NHS Borders

It seems that almost every other week at the moment we have been giving local health chiefs what is colloquially known as ‘a right good shoe-ing’.

And sadly, this week we have to pick on NHS Borders again, reporting on the rise in complaints about local health services and the massive drop in positive commendations.

The figures, revealed in the annual complaints and feedback report, record that in 2012/13, a total of 179 complaints were received, up from 150 the previous year, while commendations plunged from 3,204 to a little over 2,000.

Only around half of complaints were actually upheld and, on another good point, complaints about staff attitude and behaviour fell by a quarter.

But it surely has to have the ‘high heid yins’ at the Newstead HQ worried that the number of positive remarks dropped so substantially?

NHS Borders believes a recent publicity campaign highlighting people’s right to give feedback is probably the reason for the rise in complaints.

And it says that, despite the fall in commendations, these still outnumber complaints by 10-1.

But how do they account for the fall in commendations? Perhaps they should be a bit more concerned as to why the number of people who felt they received good enough service to warrant putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboard plummeted by such a staggering amount.