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Audio-recording your consultations with NHS doctors


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Shirli - may I ask, has the Ombudsman's Office actually yet considered any recordings you have taken - or transcripts of them?

........................................................................................................................

 

Just returned from my first hospital out-patients appointment re haemochromatosis - more blood tests, and now 'venesection' (= leeching) to start next week

.

Very pleasant young registrar: clear, patient, helpful and good humoured. She did turn a very fetching shade of pink, though, when I told her that I audio record all medical appointments, and she had to 'just go and check with her consultant because she hadn't come across this before'. But she came back promptly to say there was no problem; and so we proceeded, all smiles.

 

Progress.

 

 

 

 

GOOD MORNING NOLEGION

 

 

good for you, I really do not understand why all medical consultations, tests and actual procedures are not video and audio taped, this way everybody knows what really happens, at the moment your medical records are the only information you have, which I have recently found open to abuse from n.h.s staff

when I first complained nearly two years ago I did not mention my recordings because at the time I was using it for informative purposes ( my personal use only ) i did not consider the possibility of using it in my defence, recently I did mention it but was told they do not accept taped recordings as evidence.

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Sorry – it's just that someone just message me and asked me to open this thread because they wanted to add some information.

Hello shallowthought9 and welcome to this thread. For what it is worth I think that in the light of the clearly disgraceful way your (former)  behaved it is very generous of you to contribute to a thr

I really do not understand why all medical consultations, tests and actual procedures are not video and audio taped.

 

Because of the security issues of safely storing such a vastly increased amount of personal information?

 

Because most people don't want intimate examinations to be video taped!. If there is a good reason to have an examination recorded : the patient is usually asked to consent.

 

If you had said "I don't know why the facility for audio or video recording isn't OFFERED" : I'd have thought - that's a good idea, offering people a choice!

 

Imposing it on all patients?

That just reflects your unhealthy obsession.

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Because of the security issues of safely storing such a vastly increased amount of personal information?

 

Because most people don't want intimate examinations to be video taped!. If there is a good reason to have an examination recorded : the patient is usually asked to consent.

 

If you had said "I don't know why the facility for audio or video recording isn't OFFERED" : I'd have thought - that's a good idea, offering people a choice!

 

Imposing it on all patients?

That just reflects your unhealthy obsession.

 

I think, and have said before, that it is, for the time being at least, entirely impractical to impose recording consultations on a national basis. I would dread to think that a video of me having an intimate examination carried out was sat somewhere, out of my control. However, even from personal experience, I fully understand that it only takes one less than perfect encounter with a healthcare professional to destroy the trust between that patient and all other practitioners.

 

Recording is, I suppose, likely to be contentious for quite a while yet. We're happy for patients to record here but we don't provide the equipment for them to do so, equally several of our staff are trained as chaperones should someone feel more comfortable being accompanied.

My views are my own and are not representative of any organisation. if you've found my post helpful please click on the star below.

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Well, think about it, our medical records without audio/video are effectively sitting somewhere out of our control. Tony Blair at least gave us rights (one of the very few good things he did do) to view or ask for copies of them - although there perhaps remains issues over getting them altered when they are considered to be incorrect by the patient.

 

Petabytes of CCTV are recorded every day all over the country. Alot of this will be stored for 30 days or so and then overwritten - unless there's a policy or reason to store it longer - parking charges, speeding, criminal acts etc.

 

Perhaps the health service could offer a similar service.

 

Your surgery may offer chaperones, but I'm not sure anyone who has had their trust broken would opt to be accompanied by a member of the practice's own staff. Personally I would not consider them an objective party if any issues were raised?

 

Today, I think, the scales are tipped in the favour of the doctor/nurse/hospital management: Their word is believed above the lowly patient. Technology - video/audio footage - has enabled us (the public) to redress the balance.

 

Shirl1 has said that the Ombudsman do not accept video/audio evidence. If true, the PHSO needs to step into the 21st century.

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I think, and have said before, that it is, for the time being at least, entirely impractical to impose recording consultations on a national basis. I would dread to think that a video of me having an intimate examination carried out was sat somewhere, out of my control. However, even from personal experience, I fully understand that it only takes one less than perfect encounter with a healthcare professional to destroy the trust between that patient and all other practitioners.

 

Recording is, I suppose, likely to be contentious for quite a while yet. We're happy for patients to record here but we don't provide the equipment for them to do so, equally several of our staff are trained as chaperones should someone feel more comfortable being accompanied.

 

 

the n.h.s has wasted billions on failed electronic systems and other follies that financing anything that makes the n.h.s answerable to the public is money well spent, video recordings would be more problematic the angle of the camera would have to be adjusted for each patient. that said I am sure the many serious blunders in operating theatres, wrong limb operated on, instruments and other items left in the patient justifies audio-video proof, now that would sharpen the minds of those doing the procedure. think of all the legal costs they would save and long drawn out investigations.

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I find Shirli's report of the PHSO declining to consider recorded evidence very concerning, and very puzzling.

 

I say puzzling, not least because I have been told by those who have assisted patients with complaints taken to the PHSO, that there have already been cases where the PHSO has been obliged to consider transcripts of recorded evidence (including covertly-recorded evidence) that were presented as part of the original complaints made to the clinicians, or NHS institutions, in the first place. And, after all, if the GMC has been made listen – why on earth not the PHSO?

 

It's always possible to encounter an ignorant (and/or prejudicial) case officer at the PHSO – but that can become slightly less likely if the inadequate/unfair administrative action needs to be described in print. I wonder if there is any letter or email from the Office (with names redacted in order to comply with site rules) which could be copied and attached to a post here?

 

I would like to follow this up – and in any event, I think if the report eventually issued isn't satisfactory, the failure to consider all proper evidence should form the basis of a 'service review' at the PHSO (i.e where the Ombudsman has to review its own decision at the instigation of the complainant.)

 

It is also always possible that the disgraceful insult on top of injury to patients that the PHSO represents in 999 cases out of 1000 could, as the legality and prevalence of audio-recording by patients gets more and more known about, try to develop an illegal exclusionary policy – much as the DWP once tried to enforce against benefits claimants wanting recordings of their 'assessments'. If so, that needs overt and vigorous challenging – above all online, and now. (After some bitter campaigning by claimants, although it still tries to make it difficult for them, the DWP eventually had to back down about recording because its own legal advice confirmed it was, indeed, acting illegally!)

 

One place to start with that would be the Freedom of Information Act, and I see from the WhatDoTheyKnow website the PHSO has already come under pressure on a number of fronts, there. I intend to ask a couple of co-conspirators for their views and possible assistance a.s.a.p. – but the more the merrier. Does the Office have a written policy to exclude recorded evidence, or doesn't it?

 

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/body/parliamentary_and_health_service_ombudsman

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I find Shirli's report of the PHSO declining to consider recorded evidence very concerning, and very puzzling.

 

I say puzzling, not least because I have been told by those who have assisted patients with complaints taken to the PHSO, that there have already been cases where the PHSO has been obliged to consider transcripts of recorded evidence (including covertly-recorded evidence) that were presented as part of the original complaints made to the clinicians, or NHS institutions, in the first place. And, after all, if the GMC has been made listen – why on earth not the PHSO?

 

It's always possible to encounter an ignorant (and/or prejudicial) case officer at the PHSO – but that can become slightly less likely if the inadequate/unfair administrative action needs to be described in print. I wonder if there is any letter or email from the Office (with names redacted in order to comply with site rules) which could be copied and attached to a post here?

 

I would like to follow this up – and in any event, I think if the report eventually issued isn't satisfactory, the failure to consider all proper evidence should form the basis of a 'service review' at the PHSO (i.e where the Ombudsman has to review its own decision at the instigation of the complainant.)

 

It is also always possible that the disgraceful insult on top of injury to patients that the PHSO represents in 999 cases out of 1000 could, as the legality and prevalence of audio-recording by patients gets more and more known about, try to develop an illegal exclusionary policy – much as the DWP once tried to enforce against benefits claimants wanting recordings of their 'assessments'. If so, that needs overt and vigorous challenging – above all online, and now. (After some bitter campaigning by claimants, although it still tries to make it difficult for them, the DWP eventually had to back down about recording because its own legal advice confirmed it was, indeed, acting illegally!)

 

One place to start with that would be the Freedom of Information Act, and I see from the WhatDoTheyKnow website the PHSO has already come under pressure on a number of fronts, there. I intend to ask a couple of co-conspirators for their views and possible assistance a.s.a.p. – but the more the merrier. Does the Office have a written policy to exclude recorded evidence, or doesn't it?

 

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/body/parliamentary_and_health_service_ombudsman

 

 

 

 

GOOD EVENING NOLEGION

 

 

after reading your post I think you maybe right regarding the audio recordings, I think they really just cannot be bothered, I have voiced my concerns to the person investigating my case I told her that I am not happy with the quality of this investigation she would not give any answers to my questions, and there is no other person I can contact at the ombudsman for answers until she finishes my investigation then I can make an appeal if I am not happy with the result to their in-house appeals department.

 

 

so you are really at the mercy of this totalitarian quango

 

 

 

 

I have been on the "what do they know" website several times in the last year it makes interesting reading and worth a visit

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Petabytes of CCTV are recorded every day all over the country. Alot of this will be stored for 30 days or so and then overwritten - unless there's a policy or reason to store it longer - parking charges, speeding, criminal acts etc.

 

Perhaps the health service could offer a similar service.

 

 

Perhaps the NHS could, my reticence is based on firsthand knowledge of the implementation of change in the NHS and the available infrastructure. My practice has recently made the change from one clinical records system (EMIS PCS) to a newer one (EMIS Web). This was over 2years in the planning and implementation and required 10 separate internet connections to be brought in and synchronized in our main building and another 8 in our branch site due to the rurality of our practice. This many lines were necessary to provide us with a secure and relatively stable 10mbps connection to and from the NHS data centre some 250 miles away.

 

These lines are in constant use transferring information throughout the day and night and connect us with theoutside world, local hospital labs, the health board and auditing tools.

 

So, what does that have to do with recordings (audio or video)? Well, these recordings would form part of your patient record, which is stored until ten years after death.

 

So, in real terms the University College of London estimates some 345.6million GP appointments took place in 2012-13 with an average length of 10 minutes, so for general practitioners alone, and not nurse appointments or anything in clinics or hospitals you’re looking at 3456000000 minutes or 6570.98 years of footage produced every year assuming no growth.

 

Of course, there’s no point in recording it in grainy CCTV style footage, it needs to be clear so we’re looking at high definition as a minimum standard.

 

So, if we’re looking at storage and cataloging that, every year it’s about 604.248 petabytes of footage (based on h.264 compression of about 11gb/hr) for general practice.

 

So, back to our rural GP practice with a little under 3000 patients, we have on average 3800 minutes of consultation time every week. Our current infrastructure could not handle transferring that amount of data, in fairness, the local BT infrastructure couldn’t support it – nothing to do with the NHS.

 

Like I said earlier, we’re more than happy for anyone to record their own consultations for their own purposes but the level of development required to get us to routinely recording every single one is, for the time being at least, somewhat out of our reach.

 

I totally agree that it would assist no-end in dealing with complaints and that flows both ways, I’d love to be able to see into a consultation when investigating or dealing with abusive patients.

 

If/when it does get introduced, I then foresee a similar issue to the care.data debacle, lets tell people we’re going to record you in a daft little leaflet that 99% of people chucked in the bin. I can read the Daily Mail headlines already: “Outrage as NHS wants to FILM your appointments and store them in a data centre

Edited by think about it
Adding spaces that were lost in the copy/paste...

My views are my own and are not representative of any organisation. if you've found my post helpful please click on the star below.

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I agree with the approach that says it would be a good idea if clinicians at large started to learn to offer patients the opportunity of a consultation recorded by the clinicians themselves.

 

The primary focus of such an approach would be the potential benefit to the patient, not to the doctor. It may well be the case that few, if any, parts of the NHS are currently equipped to hold copies of any such recordings in patient records permanently – but that, in my view, isn't the point. It's the value of the recordings to the patient at home that counts. (For instance, the oncology units which have been doing this for some while, do not themselves retain copies of the recordings they take.)

 

As regards the longer term, this would, at last, begin to 'acclimatise' doctors to the idea of patients having such recordings - and would, in the same breath, as it were, remove the idea that doctors are entitled to object to patients taking recordings of consultations on their own initiative.

 

It might also mark the first step towards a potential norm in which some patients may – entirely at their discretion – have the confidence to consent to a recorded consultation being analysed at a later date even by those not directly involved in their care, but for the purposes of the medical profession learning how to treat patients better; and that's where, as I see it, Professor Elwyn & Co would like to arrive.

 

The are some thumping ironies in the history of the NHS leading to where we are now regarding clinician-provided audio-recordings, viz. :-

 

A.

 

"There are…some general-practitioner teachers who do not ask for consent and who do not even tell the patient that the consultation is being recorded. These doctors, who include some of the leading authorities in the country, argue that the record of such a consultation is no more the patient's property, than is the medical record."

 

From an editorial in the Journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners 1975

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2157837/pdf/jroyalcgprac00298-0006.pdf

 

B.

.

"Tape-recording facilities should be provided by the NHS to enable patients, should they so wish, to make a tape recording of a discussion with a healthcare professional when a diagnosis, course of treatment, or prognosis is being discussed"

 

Recommendation 10 of the Inquiry into the Bristol Royal Infirmary children's heart surgery scandal. 2001

 

C.

 

"We reject this proposal, as we believe it could undermine the relationship of trust between the patient and the health care professional"

 

Department of Health response to the above. 2002

See page 136 of the DoH response document:-

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/273320/5363.pdf)

 

D.

 

"…make sure, wherever practical, that arrangements are made to give the patient any necessary support. This might include, for example: using an advocate or interpreter; asking those close to the patient about the patient’s communication needs; or giving the patient a written or audio record of the discussion and any decisions that were made."

 

From GMC explanatory guidance "Consent: patients and doctors making decisions together". 2009

http://www.gmc-uk.org/static/documents/content/Consent_-_English_0414.pdf

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I agree with the approach that says it would be a good idea if clinicians at large started to learn to offer patients the opportunity of a consultation recorded by the clinicians themselves.

 

The primary focus of such an approach would be the potential benefit to the patient, not to the doctor. It may well be the case that few, if any, parts of the NHS are currently equipped to hold copies of any such recordings in patient records permanently – but that, in my view, isn't the point. It's the value of the recordings to the patient at home that counts. (For instance, the oncology units which have been doing this for some while, do not themselves retain copies of the recordings they take.)

 

As regards the longer term, this would, at last, begin to 'acclimatise' doctors to the idea of patients having such recordings - and would, in the same breath, as it were, remove the idea that doctors are entitled to object to patients taking recordings of consultations on their own initiative.

 

It might also mark the first step towards a potential norm in which some patients may – entirely at their discretion – have the confidence to consent to a recorded consultation being analysed at a later date even by those not directly involved in their care, but for the purposes of the medical profession learning how to treat patients better; and that's where, as I see it, Professor Elwyn & Co would like to arrive.

 

The are some thumping ironies in the history of the NHS leading to where we are now regarding clinician-provided audio-recordings, viz. :-

 

A.

 

"There are…some general-practitioner teachers who do not ask for consent and who do not even tell the patient that the consultation is being recorded. These doctors, who include some of the leading authorities in the country, argue that the record of such a consultation is no more the patient's property, than is the medical record."

 

From an editorial in the Journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners 1975

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2157837/pdf/jroyalcgprac00298-0006.pdf

 

B.

.

"Tape-recording facilities should be provided by the NHS to enable patients, should they so wish, to make a tape recording of a discussion with a healthcare professional when a diagnosis, course of treatment, or prognosis is being discussed"

 

Recommendation 10 of the Inquiry into the Bristol Royal Infirmary children's heart surgery scandal. 2001

 

C.

 

"We reject this proposal, as we believe it could undermine the relationship of trust between the patient and the health care professional"

 

Department of Health response to the above. 2002

See page 136 of the DoH response document:-

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/273320/5363.pdf)

 

D.

 

"…make sure, wherever practical, that arrangements are made to give the patient any necessary support. This might include, for example: using an advocate or interpreter; asking those close to the patient about the patient’s communication needs; or giving the patient a written or audio record of the discussion and any decisions that were made."

 

From GMC explanatory guidance "Consent: patients and doctors making decisions together". 2009

http://www.gmc-uk.org/static/documents/content/Consent_-_English_0414.pdf

 

 

 

 

nolegion you started this thread more than four years ago and your last post does not disappoint, you have dug out some very interesting information it seems odd that recording consultations has been discussed for 40 years

i would go even further and say all procedures in the operating theatre should be recorded by audio-video why has this not been done before all this talk it would be invasive for the patient is bunkum the n.h.s do not really want to be accountable to those who pay their salaries.

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nolegion you started this thread more than four years ago and your last post does not disappoint, you have dug out some very interesting information it seems odd that recording consultations has been discussed for 40 years

i would go even further and say all procedures in the operating theatre should be recorded by audio-video why has this not been done before all this talk it would be invasive for the patient is bunkum the n.h.s do not really want to be accountable to those who pay their salaries.

 

Should the camera be fixed in position, or adjusted during the procedure.

If fixed : how to make sure it is in a useful position?

 

If to be adjusted : who adjusts it?. How to avoid it showing only the back of the surgeon's head ?

 

It may be a "good soundbite", but have you yet ensured it is a realistic and achievable concept?

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According to one Canadian surgeon, the surgeon wears the camera, Bazza:-

 

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2014/08/30/surgery_room_black_box_poised_to_change_medical_culture.html

 

Sweet, the bit about: "The data would also be kept from patients who file malpractice lawsuits against surgeons."

 

Even before the idea leaves the drawing board, keeping patients in the dark is identified as a priority!

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According to one Canadian surgeon, the surgeon wears the camera, Bazza:-

 

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2014/08/30/surgery_room_black_box_poised_to_change_medical_culture.html

 

Sweet, the bit about: "The data would also be kept from patients who file malpractice lawsuits against surgeons."

 

Even before the idea leaves the drawing board, keeping patients in the dark is identified as a priority!

 

 

GOOD MORNING NOLEGION

 

 

that's really put things in a nut shell, the medical profession whist talking about retaining trust between patient and doctor they lie through their teeth to protect themselves and colleagues regardless of the damage they do to patients, people no longer respect the medical profession it is clear they have no intension of being transparent, hiding behind red tape and paying huge salaries to staff who's only job is to keep the general public in the dark and protect staff regardless of what they have done.

the more nolegion digs up the gravity of the situation is clear to see.

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Dr Arun Kumar Singhal.

 

Allegations:-

 

"The Panel will inquire into the allegation that on two occasions in 2011 Dr Singhal consulted with Patient A, who expressed feeling suicidal and her intention to commit suicide. It is alleged that Dr Singhal told Patient A on both occasions to kill herself, and at the latter consultation refused to provide Patient A with a medical document she requested and called her a ‘disgrace to be a patient’.

 

It is further alleged that in the record of the latter consultation, Dr Singhal failed to include a reference to Patient A’s expression of suicidal intent and his own response, and in fact added an entry to the effect that Patient A had threatened to kill him, which was false. It is alleged that this inaccurate record was misleading and dishonest."

 

http://www.gmc-uk.org/calendar/event_details.aspx?ID=72c9bde5-a53c-45b7-8d2e-afef0e32e870

 

…………………………………………………………………………………..

 

BBC report 18 09 14:-

 

" The actions of Dr Arun Singhal, a GP in Huyton, Liverpool, amounted to serious misconduct, the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) found.

 

He also told the woman she could look up how to kill herself on the internet. Dr Singhal was unaware that she had recorded the conversation on her mobile phone. He did not attend the tribunal.

 

The MPTS hearing in Manchester heard that in May 2011 the woman, referred to as Patient A, told Dr Singhal she felt like killing herself and her anti-depressant medication was not working. "

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-merseyside-29254609

 

…………………………………………………………………………………

 

3 months suspension?!

 

(It is often a while before the full case report gets posted at the MPTS website).

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I have received the ombudsman report today regarding the nurse who assaulted me during a smear test, it is basically her word against mine. now I am able to appeal and insist on my recordings being heard this does not only involve the lies the nurse has told but my gp and the practice manager has also lied

will keep you all informed.

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I have received the ombudsman report today regarding the nurse who assaulted me during a smear test, it is basically her word against mine. now I am able to appeal and insist on my recordings being heard this does not only involve the lies the nurse has told but my gp and the practice manager has also lied

will keep you all informed.

 

 

good for you shirli

good luck

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I have been comparing notes with a co-conspirator this w\e.

 

First, he tells me that the survey of reactions (from both clinicians and patients) to the recording of consultations, following 'patientgate', seems well advanced.

 

Having completed the initial online questionnaire, he was invited to give a 15 minute telephone interview with an academic based in the USA – at the academy's expense. It lasted nearer half an hour, and he says he was treated with great courtesy and good humour. We will be hearing more about such interviews from the USA in due course, I have no doubt.

 

Second, although he is a determined 'covert-recorder', he reminds me we have both now encountered, by listening to (our own) audio-recordings following consultations, serious errors of fact made by ourselves as patients.

 

In my case, on my playback of my last hospital outpatient appointment, I got to a spot where I was asked about allergies. My medical records once recorded two, from childhood: to penicillin and to aspirin. It was with no small difficulty over the years that I chased the penicillin reference out of those records. It's fine for me. But I do have an allergic reaction to aspirin.

 

BUT - what I actually said during the appointment, no doubt with those difficulties coming back to mind, was 'penicillin'. I was astonished to hear myself say it in the recording. I think, as my co-conspirator concluded in his own case, "you are thinking so firmly about 'white rather than black', you actually mange to say 'black' instead, without noticing it. "

 

In the wrong circumstances, that slip of the tongue could have had serious consequences for me. But I have now had an opportunity to correct my error within a few days, and that's something I would never have been able to do without the benefit of listening to the recording of the consultation, at home and at my leisure, later.

 

There are no downsides for a patient in having an audio-recording of a consultation to take away; and no valid grounds for doctors to argue against the idea.

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Nolegion, you give an excellent example why recording can be good for both parties. As you suggest, at some point in the future (may the gods forbid) pencillin may have been withheld to your detriment because of that unrecalled comment.

 

I read of the case of Dr Singhai (840) and note that it was the second appointment the patient recorded. At the hearing the patient was asked why she recorded the consultation. The inference (to me anyway) was that she was trying to entrap the doctor, who clearly missed the class on bedside manner. Three months suspension! What a bunch of space cadets the MPTS are.

 

In response to think about it's (834) post, I can see some problems with offering (certainly it should not be compulsory) every patient a video/audio recording and then transferring it to a data centre. However, not every patient would opt for recording (I'd say at this point a majority would not). The data need not necessarily be transferred, but stored locally, perhaps being overwritten within a set timeframe much like other public services do. The patient could be offered a copy of the recording for his own records for a small fee.

 

What we really need is a massive upgrade to the UK's internet services and I would use the billions set aside for HS2 (and I don't live on or near the line).

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Thank you for your concern, Sali.

 

I have to say the past few weeks have provided several lessons to me about audio-recording one's treatment.

 

I often didn't bother to listen again – at least not immediately – to the recordings I take. My usual habit was to leave this until shortly before my next appointment, to remind me exactly 'where we were' last time.

 

No longer. I have now resolved to make sure I listen again, straight away, every time.

 

I only listened to the relevant consultation promptly on that last occasion, to check recording quality; for I am pleased finally to have 'up-graded' to using a recording memory-stick, instead of my aging 'memo-recorder'. Available from an extensive variety of makes buyable online (e.g. from a well-known retailer beginning with 'A') at less than £10 a throw. So, following "My Turn's Manoeuvre", in fact I now use two. Recording quality: fine.

 

And, even though I declare I am recording, they would be completely concealable if desired. In my case, one recorded through the material of my shirt's breast pocket, and the other through an envelope uppermost on the file of copy medical records I take with me. Sorted.

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I was reading the Ashya King story - the little boy with a brain tumour removed from Southampton hospital by his parents.

 

I confess when I first heard it I doubted the hospital's version of events.

 

If I believe the father's story - and I do - his child was being offered inferior treatment, with long-term side-effects, due to the cost. The family did their research and knew there were other possibilities. Quite rightly they raised these with the doctors and one threatened Mr King with the removal of his rights to make decisions for his own son if he continued to ask questions. The doctor concerned has denied this. Oh how I wish that Mr King had recorded the conversations, but it's not the first thing you think of when you are in the depths of despair.

 

 

The good news is that little Ashya is receiving proton beam therapy and improving day by day.

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I see that families of care home residents are being advised on how to set up surveillance to catch the abuse of our elderly. it is now time the government looked at the n.h.s where abuse which in many cases results in death happens on a much larger scale.

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Is the CQC's advice on how to undertake covert surveillance an admission that they are not up to the job of regulating care homes (for whatever reason)? Does this mean that the CQC will feel they can rest on their laurels and let the responsibility of protecting loved ones fall increasingly on family and friends?

 

Is it an admission of the impossibility of ridding this industry of cruel and inept carers and incompetent managers without the proof that video footage offers?

 

If the CQC have failed in care homes, where does that leave the vulnerable patients in our hospitals?

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Aha! I'm very glad of the contributions here which seize on the eventual, much-delayed stirrings of the CQC as regards the monitoring of care with cameras.

 

This would appear to be the source of yesterday's press commentaries:-

 

http://www.cqc.org.uk/content/statement-about-use-cameras-monitor-care

 

but I believe that although that CQC announcement is dated 06 10 14, the spin-doctors carefully gave the press notice of it significantly ahead of the general public's being able to read the actual full text at the CQC website. I have no idea why.

 

In any event, it looks like the CQC is sailing slap-bang into our subject. I say this not only because I know full well there are a lot of contributors and viewers here whose loved-ones have received shocking 'care' at the hands of both hospitals and 'homes', but because the announcement makes it clear the CQC intends to provide 'guidance' which will encompass:-

 

'.. guidance for… members of the public… on the issues to consider if they are thinking of using cameras – both secretly and openly – as an option to monitor care for themselves...'

 

What are the chances that the CQC's forthcoming commentary will be based on an accurate understanding and presentation of the law?

 

If so, then, just for instance, some of the Hospital Trusts whose (illegal) 'anti-recording' polices I've mentioned over the years will need to think again p.d.q.; and there are many, many other ways in which accurate affirmation of the legal position by the CQC could be used to reinforce the position of patients who record.

 

If the CQC misleads, or ducks the issues, I trust we will all find ways to expose the deficiencies to the best of our abilities, without delay. These days, we can spin back.

 

I look forward to reading the complete and final 'guidance' by the end of this month.

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With details I have mentioned in another thread, I have recently been diagnosed with a condition which was always likely, the net said, to lead to 'leeching'.

 

I try not to use terms like blood-sucking and leeching too much when consulting with clinicians - they must be sooo entertained by such purported jocularity - but leeching it is, all the same! Basically, they swipe as much blood as they can from you, as often as they dare, and throw it away.

 

So, in any event, when I tipped up on my tod for my first leeching a little while ago, I was not particularly bothered. Predicted and standard procedure, and needles and squeamishness don't muster amongst my many problems.

 

"Simply floyin' out of you," the absolutely charming, kindly Irish nurse told me. Not long later, as we disengaged the cannula, I said I was glad to be saving on parking charges, and my Irish friend went to fetch me a drink.

 

I remember very little of the next 25 minutes because I was unconscious for most of them.

 

On coming at least half-way back round, I discovered I was blessed with two fresh cannulas, one in each arm with saline drips at the other end of them. The drip on the left depended from a medic holding the bag as high above their head as possible; on the right there appeared to be a problem maintaining security of tenure for the needle, because, as my blood pressure had plummeted, I had turned so clammy none of their sticky stuff would stay stuck.

.

It happens to some patients occasionally, was the message I began to absorb through dense nausea. I'll get a saline drip in advance, next time: unlikely to happen again. (And it indeed it hasn't. I get the 'advance saline' for 20 mins, and then we are away).

 

I was treated with every courtesy and care, and I had and have every confidence in returning to that medical team for my ongoing treatment.

 

What impressed me was not only the cheerful, considerate and efficient way I was treated while able to converse, but that exactly the same respectful, kindly and purposeful attitude was applied to me, at every stage, by the doctor summoned and the small team he calmly and succinctly directed, while I was 'out'. Plus the very prompt reaction from Ireland which summoned the extra attention within milliseconds of my 'losing it'.

 

Now, how would I know all that?

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