• Case ref:
  • Date:
    March 2019
  • Body:
    Tayside NHS Board
  • Sector(s):
  • Subject:
    clinical treatment / diagnosis
  • Outcome:
    Some upheld, recommendations


Mr C complained about the treatment he received from the board for pain in his thigh. Mr C said that he attended Perth Royal Infirmary and Ninewells Hospital over nearly a three year period for treatment for his condition and was seen by three different consultant vascular surgeons (a specialist in the treatment of diseases affecting the vascular system including diseases of the arteries, veins and lymphatic vessels). Mr C said he was not satisfied with the treatment suggested by the consultants and was subsequently seen and assessed by a surgeon at a private hospital, who carried out treatment which cured the pain in Mr C's thigh.

We took independent medical advice from a consultant vascular surgeon. We found that Mr C's treatment by the board was reasonable and found no failings in the treatment offered. Therefore, we did not uphold this part of Mr C's complaint.

Mr C also complained that the board failed to provide him with an adequate response to his complaint. We found that aspects of the board's response to Mr C's complaint did not appear to match with the evidence in the medical record and the response also failed to answer all Mr C's questions at the end of his letter of complaint. Therefore, we upheld this part of Mr C's complaint.


What we asked the organisation to do in this case:

  • Apologise to Mr C for the failure in complaint handling. The apology should meet the standards set out in the SPSO guidelines on apology available at www.spso.org.uk/leaflets-and-guidance

In relation to complaints handling, we recommended:

  • Responses to complaints should take into account the evidence in the medical records and address all the issues raised, in accordance with the NHS Scotland Complaints Handling Procedure.