NHS Tayside deals with 20 bullying complaints

NHS Tayside has investigated 20 complaints of workplace bullying over the last 20 months.

Figures released in response to a freedom of information request revealed there were 14 formal and informal investigations into allegations of bullying during 2016/17 and another six in 2017/18 so far.

The health board refused to disclose the result of each investigation but said there were cases in which the complaint was upheld and disciplinary action taken.

There were also cases where informal action was taken or there was insufficient evidence to prove bullying and so no further action was taken.

NHS Scotland carried out a survey focusing on bullying and workplace harassment last month and will publish the results in February.

North East Conservative MSP Bill Bowman said it was important NHS Tayside let its staff know it would take any claims of bullying in the workplace seriously.

He said: “I understand the NHS Scotland national survey, including perceptions on bullying and harassment, will be published early next year. Twenty bullying complaints in two years may be representative of the national picture but will still be of concern to Tayside health board.

“There is no such thing as formal or informal bullying and all complaints must be taken at face value. Workplace bullying can make employees miserable and it’s incumbent on the board to do its utmost to foster a listening environment.”

George Doherty, NHS Tayside’s director of human resources and organisational development, said: “NHS Tayside is committed to providing a working environment which is free from bullying and harassment and does not condone this behaviour in any form.

“We take any allegations of bullying seriously and have robust policies and procedures in place so that staff can feel confident to report any concerns they may have.”