Cultural issues related to allegations of bullying and harassment in NHS Highland: independent review report

An independent review report looking at cultural issues related to allegations of bullying and harassment in NHS Highland by John Sturrock, QC and mediator.

37. Quick Summary of Main Points and Proposals

(See paragraph 33.7)

  • Collective, collaborative, cooperative culture and leadership
  • Compassion, kindness, relationships and people at the heart of NHSH
  • Acceptance of uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity
  • Acknowledgement of past, willingness to look forward
  • Use best practice and current excellent resources wherever possible
  • Deal with disagreements and difficulties early and promote civility
  • Mediation and facilitation have important roles to play
  • Measured, thoughtful and coherent strategy needed to take matters forward
  • Build on earlier reports
  • Seek to align how things are done in NHSH with the National Performance Framework and its outcomes
  • Reset senior management – openness and communication are key
  • Engage with other public sector leaders
  • Chief executive to lead by example, supported by able senior managers and the Board Chair
  • Engagement with staff at all levels, recognising impact of the past and recent events and acknowledging the commitment shown at all levels
  • Scottish Government to demonstrate and support people-centred leadership
  • Board to exercise governance function well; review governance structures
  • Non-executive board members to be well trained and supported
  • Board strategic vision needed
  • Ensure clinical engagement and effective relationships with managers
  • Enhance relationships with GPs
  • Role of trade unions and staff representation to be reviewed
  • Review management and other arrangements in Argyll and Bute
  • Ensure support available, including listening, for those who have experienced inappropriate behaviour
  • Consider strategy for meetings, safe spaces and other forums to address issues and build relationships
  • Instigate programme of training for staff and managers
  • Adopt social media and communication standards so that simple, clear, consistent and regular messages to all staff become the norm
  • Support and develop HR-related strategies to deal with issues adequately
  • Recognise importance of mental health
  • Introduce effective "speaking up" / "whistleblowing" facilities
  • Convene a three-day retreat to consider this report, assess its proposals and plan the way ahead
  • Regular reviews with appropriate benchmarks to assess progress



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