"Making a positive breakthrough"

About: NHS Fife

(as the patient),

After recently complaining about the service I had received from the NHS Fife Psychology Department (NFPD) - see previous stories - I recently had the opportunity to meet with one of the NFPD's psychologists to discuss my issues with.

Now as much as I will complain about bad service, I also give credit where credit is due, and I must say that I was pleasantly surprised and happy with how that meeting went.

Before the meeting, I was getting into "battle mode", basically getting ready for a heated discussion/argument regarding my negative experiences, but I really must say that the psychologist that I met - Dr Oonagh Williamson - was excellent.

She really put me at ease and let me know that at the start of the meeting that we had plenty of time to go over all of my issues. She apologised profusely for what had happened with my previous bad experience - see previous story in my profile – and for also the NFPD not keeping in touch with me during the long 6-7 month gap between my first and second appointment with them. This was something which I greatly appreciated, to which she also added that there would be changes with regards to keeping in contact with patients who were between appointments, in order to let them know that they hadn't been forgotten about.

But what made the appointment a success in my view was that Dr Williamson actually listened to me and gave me the chance to fully explain my issues, both my personal issues such as anxiety, gender and sexuality issues, as well as my previous negative experiences with her colleagues. I actually felt my opinion was being valued and taken seriously and that I was seen as a person, not a problem.

After that, we discussed what treatment to progress with. I must say that I was and still am confident with what Dr Williamson suggested, as she clearly demonstrated that she understood my issues and how what she suggested would work, and I look forward to starting that treatment soon.

To cap it all off, she later sent me a letter detailing what we had discussed and treatment progression, which was a great help as it confirmed and reminded me of what we discussed. This helped reassure me that (a) I hadn't misinterpreted anything during the meeting, and that (b) reassured me that a plan was in place and that I would be getting the treatment we discussed.

Such communication really helps bolster the relationship between patient and doctor/psychologist/therapist and restores your confidence in the NHS.

Once again my thanks to Dr Williamson for being so helpful and taking the time to listen to me and actually treating me as a person, not a problem.

I'd also like to thank Patient Opinion and the NHS Fife Liaison staff for giving me the opportunity to express my opinions on the service I had received, actually reading my complaints and for helping me to help put things right.

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Responses

Response from Louise Ewing, Patient Relations Manager, NHS Fife We have made a change

picture of Louise Ewing

Dear Concernedparent2014

Thank you once again for using Patient Opinion as a means of contuinuing to provide feedback about our service. I was delighted to hear that the meeting with Dr Williamson went so well and that you left feeling listened to and valued. These are critical elements of therapeutic relationship and it sounds like this has been established and that there is now a good plan in place to provide you with ongoing support. Dr Williamson writing to you to re iterate the discussions is good practice and we will make sure that she and others get to see your feedback. When you last posted, Dr Cheshire shared her response and on that basis I will make sure that she too sees your recent post.

From my own perspective I am delighted that Patient Opinion has provide you with a means to communicate with us. I have felt humbled by the honesty in your posts and am delighted that this engagement has led you to a better place. It demonstrates just how important it is to offer people a range of ways to communicate and shows that it can result in positive change.

Thank you for taking the time to share with us once again.

Very kind regards

Louise Ewing

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