"Let my father down"

About: Lanarkshire Community Services / GP Out of Hours service NHS 24 / NHS 24 (111 service)

(as a relative),

My father had motor neurone disease and he passed away in march 2016 in his own house. at 2. 40am my mum & aunt were with him I got to my mums home 20 -30 mins later.  I called nhs 24 at around 3-30am. I called 4 to 5 times.   the police had to attend and they also called NHS 24 a few times and to add to my familys pain they did not sent anyone to my mums house till 2-40pm later that day.  the police could not leave until my dad was officially pronounced dead I think the length of time they got a doctor out to see him and pronounced him dead was far to long and to this day we have not had any one say sorry to the family and sorry to the police for holding them up for nearly 12 hrs.   we could not arrange for a funeral director until my dad was declared dead.

No family should have to wait that long for help from any doctor or NHS 24

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Response from Tom Bryce, General Manager , South West Unit, NHS Lanarkshire

picture of Tom Bryce

Dear Spambo,

Please accept my condolences for your loss; I’m very sorry to hear of your poor experience in the out of hours period.

I can confirm that you followed the correct process in the circumstances which is to contact NHS24 by telephone, they in turn contact the NHS Lanarkshire Out of Hours service. We aim to visit within four hours and we would usually telephone the family if we are unable to do this.

I am very sorry that this doesn’t appear to have been your experience and I would be keen to look into the circumstances as to why this didn’t happen.

Please contact our patient affairs department on Tel No: 01698 858321 if you feel able to provide further information.

Kind regards


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Response from Shona Lawrence, Patient Affairs Manager, NHS 24

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Dear Spambo

Thank you for sharing your story. I was very sorry to learn of the delay in a Doctor attending at what, I fully appreciate, would have been a distressing time. I would like to offer you, and your family, my sincere condolences on the sad loss of your father.

NHS 24 is keen to explore the contact with our service to understand better what caused the delay in the Doctor attending. We work very closely with our partner Health Boards in an attempt to provide a seamless service, however clearly there was an unacceptable delay for your family at this time.

I can be contacted at patientaffairs@nhs24.scot.nhs.uk or by telephone on 0141 337 4582. With some additional detail, I would be pleased to arrange a review of the contact with NHS 24.

With kind regards


Shona Lawrence

NHS 24 Patient Affairs Manager

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