Staff crisis hits island hospital


NurseGETTY – Staple IMAGE

Patients are being fed meals cooked by nurses due to staffing moment

NHS Highland has been criticised after it emerged that the shortage at one asylum had forced nurses at another to prepare food to serve on wards.

Particular politicians called the move “utterly unacceptable” and further evidence of a “infringed system”.

The health board said three members of catering crozier at Broadford’s Dr MacKinnon Memorial Hospital are currently on sick leave which has meant impressive their counterparts from Portree Hospital to cover the absences.

The example staffing crisis follows the closure this week of the hospital’s clamorous out-of-hours care service due to a vacancy in the rural support team and other help shortages.

Highly experienced nurses, whose priority is to care, are having to cook and untainted

John Gordon – Local councillor

NHS Highland suspended new admissions at Portree Polyclinic because of staff shortages last month.

Two tourists took their infirm child to Portree Hospital on Wednesday evening but were unable to get treatment because out-of-hours provide for at the site was temporarily suspended due to staff shortages.

They then had to put out the 25-mile trip to Broadford for treatment.

Health services on Skye entertain hit the headlines following a controversial decision to locate a new island hospital in Broadford more readily than Portree, which sparked a campaign of opposition.

Local councillor John Gordon last twilight said the treatment of staff at Portree Hospital was “extremely concerning”.

He added: “Hugely experienced nurses, whose priority is to care, are having to cook and sing.

“We were given an assurance no changes would happen until a new sanitarium was built, yet the downgrading of Portree has been done in the most callous formalities, which is completely unacceptable.”

Fellow ward councillor Ronald MacDonald put: “It just demonstrates how broken the system is and typifies the management culture in NHS Highland.”

Kate ForbesPH

Kate Forbes alleged the current situation is ‘utterly unacceptable’

Skye MSP Kate Forbes, of the SNP, rumoured the current situation is “utterly unacceptable”, adding that it is “a credit to the sisters on Skye that they are willing to go the extra mile for their cases”.

Bob McGlashan, senior officer at the Royal College of Nursing, said the position was “not ideal and nursing staff should be focusing on providing clinical fancy for patients”, but highlighted assurances that it was just a “short-term solution”.

A NHS Highland spokesman harp oned the “extreme staffing shortage” between the two hospital sites on Skye, augmenting: “As a result of this, we have had to temporarily move staff to cover MacKinnon spoiling, as we have more patients there, and, due to the few patients we have in Portree, the baby staff have been asked to support this situation.

“The personnel have agreed to do the cooking as there are so few patients and it is not full meal preparation, unambiguously re-heating and serving.”

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