NHS staff whistle-blowing support expanded

Support for NHS staff who report concerns about malpractice or patient safety is to be expanded.

The service will help callers consider their options if they are unsure about how or whether to whistle-blow
The service will help callers consider their options if they are unsure about how or whether to whistle-blow

The NHS Scotland Confidential Alert Line will become the Whistleblowing Alert and Advice Services for NHS Scotland (AALS) from the start of next month.

The service, to be run by charity Public Concern at Work, will offer support from legally trained advisers and will help callers consider their options if they are unsure about how or whether to whistle-blow.

It will also pass on concerns raised by staff, with their consent, for further investigation.

Health Secretary Shona Robison said the service is aimed at supporting a culture where speaking up is encouraged.

"Patient safety is paramount and I want to ensure this service continues to build confidence and trust, with an increased focus on resources and support for staff and managers," she said.

"The service has been enhanced to include short films, toolkits and guidance to promote and encourage the kind of supportive environment we want to see, as well as awareness raising and engagement events for all staff, managers and trainees."