• Case ref:
  • Date:
    February 2019
  • Body:
    Forth Valley NHS Board
  • Sector(s):
  • Subject:
    clinical treatment / diagnosis
  • Outcome:
    Not upheld, no recommendations


Mrs C complained about the practice's handling of a phone call made by her late son (Mr A) who had hurt his back. Mr A spoke with a triage nurse, who offered him an appointment with an Extended Scope Practitioner (ESP - a physiotherapist who can undertake extra duties such as ordering investiations or making referrals), which Mr A declined. The triage nurse advised Mr A to take regular paracetmol and ibuprofen, and to seek further assistance if his condition worsened. His request for stronger pain killers and other medication was declined. Mrs C considered that Mr A should have been seen by a GP and complained that Mr A didn't get the help he needed.

We took independent advice from a GP and a nurse. We found that the offer of an appointment with the ESP was reasonable for the assessment of back pain, and that it would have allowed for onward referral to a GP if deemed necessary. We also found that the triage nurse carried out a reasonable assessment and recorded no information that indicated the need for a GP assessment. Therefore, we did not uphold Mrs C's complaint.