"GP making psychological diagnosis!"

About: Ayrshire & Arran Community Services / Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services General practices in Ayrshire & Arran

(as a parent/guardian),

My son was present when the GP stated that he could be suffering from Pathological Grief Response'. Upon hearing this my son was extremely angry, very detached and seemed unable to understand his own feelings/behaviours in a worse way than before for 3-4 weeks until I telephoned CAMHs who insisted they would never use such terminology with a child, they had never heard of pathological grief response and indeed it would be very unlikely that they would label a child pathological. This seemed to restore some order to my son's reasoning capacity and he slowly began to settle again.

Also a few weeks earlier I said (on my first visit to the same GP with my other son) that we just 'need a little bit of help please'! The GP in question offered me no support, no telephone numbers or advice on who to contact and actually questioned my relationship with my elder son! Which was why I sought help in the first place. They completely disregarded our needs as a family and my judgement as a mother. With hindsight I should have discussed the matter in more depth with my son who thought he was going to be labelled with a disorder like his elder brother.

In both cases I feel the GP should not have attempted to diagnosis/judge how to proceed and that should have been left to the professional in that department.

I understand the GP wanting to share their knowledge, but they had no knowledge of me as a professional and of my family as a whole.

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Responses

Response from Eunice Goodwin, Patient Feedback Manager for NHS Ayrshire and Arran, Quality Improvement and Governance Team, NHS Ayrshire and Arran

picture of Eunice Goodwin

Dear J.MC,

I am sorry there has been so much distress for both you and your son. The long and short of it would seem to come down to communication which could have been better. Sadly, this is a theme to pop up from time to time. It is also disappointing that neither of you got the support you needed and for that, I am very sorry.

If you would like this to be addressed by your practice, you can call them direct and speak to the Practice Manger or if you prefer, contact me and I can help to arrange a meeting with the Practice Manager.

I am sure your concerns would be discussed as a team and the learning identified in the practice as a whole. Unfortunately, unless the practice is contacted direct, it will be impossible to direct this post appropriately.

Should you wish to contact me, call me on 01563 826222 or you can email me on eunice.goodwin@aapct.scot.nhs.uk.

I hope things are settling down for your son now.

Best wishes,

Eunice

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Update posted by J.MC (a parent/guardian)

Thank you. I will contact them direct!

Response from Eunice Goodwin, Patient Feedback Manager for NHS Ayrshire and Arran, Quality Improvement and Governance Team, NHS Ayrshire and Arran

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That is excellent, I it always help to talk things through.

Eunice

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