Saturday, 31 May 2014

Email just sent to IIMHL President & CEO Fran Silvestri

Here is the content of an Email just sent to Fran Silvestri, President and CEO of IIMHL, copied to leads at Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS), Scottish Patient Safety Programme in Mental Health (SPSP-MH), Scottish Government Mental Health Division, to the VOX Scotland (mental health service user organisation) Board Chair who also works with HIS (conflict of interest), and to Scottish Government Ministers:

"After I was told in a phone call yesterday by Ruth Glassborow, Healthcare Improvement Scotland messenger, of my IIMHL exchange exclusion she asked if I wanted Fran Silvester to phone me.   I corrected Ruth, saying that your name was Fran Silvestri.  I saw no point in discussing this with you as the HIS and Scottish Government mental health division minds were made up.  They didn't "feel it will be for anyone's benefit" for me to attend the patient safety exchange.  [I obviously don't count as "anyone"]

Four years ago in 2010 I raised issues with Geoff Huggins to do with Lomond Ward, Stratheden Hospital, near where I live in Fife, Scotland.  I told him about the risks to female patients in that ward, the inappropriate behaviour of male nurses, about a Russian female student from St Andrews University who wasn't keeping her clothes on and nurses drawing attention to this in front of male patients.  A mixed gender ward where male patients are in single bedrooms directly opposite the female dormitories.  No nurses about to keep an eye on behaviours.  Patient safety issues. 

For interest, here is a video prompted and filmed by Healthcare Improvement Scotland, involving Stratheden Hospital senior nursing staff, many of whom I know personally and who were in charge of the ward where my son in February 2012 was locked in a seclusion room for hours at a time, no toilet, broken hand untreated, light switch outside, unobserved, his life at risk:

In this video you will note that fun is being made of restraint.  [My son was face-down restrained in Lomond Ward after being assaulted by a staff nurse on 1 Feb12 prior to his being locked in the seclusion room]  HIS and NHS Fife called the film "fun stuff" when they uploaded it to the Scottish Patient Safety Programme in Mental Health website which is where I first saw it.  

I was horrified to see such a film made in a psychiatric ward dining room in Stratheden Hospital.  It looks like the IPCU ward where my son was dehumanisingly treated and the room in which I was bullied by a group of 5 nurses on 4 Feb12 for trying to film my son's broken hand and bruising.  I wasn't allowed a camera but HIS obviously was.

I had to complain on a number of occasions about this inappropriate video before it was completely removed from the SPSP-MH website.  Why was the film made in the first place?  Who thought it suitable?  I don't know as no-one has explained their actions to me.  I suspect that HIS staff are unaccountable to the public who pay their wages, to unpaid carers who are picking the pieces up after dehumanising psychiatric treatment and to people with "lived experience" who have had their human rights abused in psychiatric settings. 


I have asked many questions as to why dehumanising practice went on at Stratheden Hospital for so many years (30+).  My concern is that it's still going on and patients are at risk of injury, and women at risk of sexual exploitation.  I cannot be silent about these matters. 

I have asked SPSP-MH and HIS what they are doing to improve patient safety in Stratheden Hospital.  They have not responded.  And now I am banned from attending the IIMHL Scottish patient safety exchange so I won't be able to ask questions there.  My voice silenced.

You will understand my concerns yesterday on hearing of my exclusion from the IIMHL exchange with only 10 days warning.  The only reason given by HIS is that they don't "feel it will be in anyone's benefit" for me to attend.  I have no say in the matter.  HIS can do what they like.  Make fun stuff videos about restraint.  Not be answerable to the public.  

And these are the people tasked with leading on patient safety in Scotland's mental health and psychiatric settings?"

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