• Case ref:
  • Date:
    October 2017
  • Body:
    NHS 24
  • Sector(s):
  • Subject:
    appointments / admissions (delay / cancellation / waiting lists)
  • Outcome:
    Not upheld, no recommendations


Ms C complained about her contact with NHS 24 when she phoned them about her late mother (Mrs A). Specifically, Ms C said that NHS 24 unreasonably delayed in answering her call and in assessing Mrs A's condition. Ms C also said that NHS 24 failed to take appropriate action in response to Mrs A's symptoms, as they did not immediately call an ambulance for Mrs A, even though she had a history of sepsis.

During our investigation we took independent advice from an out-of-hours practitioner. We found that there was no unreasonable delay in answering Ms C's call, or in assessing Mrs A's condition. We found that sepsis cannot be diagnosed over the phone. We considered that NHS 24 took appropriate clinical action in response to Mrs A's symptoms, by arranging an urgent out-of-hours GP visit. We did not uphold Ms C's complaint.