Patient Opinion is a website which provides a confidential way for patients to share their healthcare experiences, good or bad, online. Comments are passed onto relevant staff who can then respond or use the feedback to help improve services.
Feedback can be left about hospitals, GP surgeries, clinics and hospices.
The Scottish Government is encouraging health boards to engage with the website by providing £160,000 in funding. The money is being allocated to NHS Highland, NHS Shetland, NHS Ayrshire and Arran, the Scottish Ambulance Service, Health Improvement Scotland and National Education Scotland.
Health Secretary Alex Neil said: “We want to hear patient’s stories first hand in their own words, whether it’s good or bad, because it helps us to make our health services better.
“Now patients, carers and their families will be able to let health boards know, openly and publicly, how a service was for them and where it can improve. And if our health professionals are doing a great job we want them to know about it.”
Tom Waterson, Chair, UNISON Scotland’s Health Committee, said: “Unison welcomes the Health Secretary’s move to encourage ‘real-time’ dialogue between health boards, staff and patients. Patient stories can make a difference in many ways, both to the quality of care and the morale of hard working NHS staff in their desire to deliver world class care.”
Patient Opinion has been running for seven years, and has been active in Scotland for 18 months.