Trip to hospital has happy ending for NHS Chief Executive

By Democrat reporter

When you’re an NHS Chief Executive, an A&E department wouldn’t normally be on your list for an ideal holiday destination. But that’s exactly where Lesley Smith ended up.

Lesley, who is originally from Glasgow, is the Chief Executive of Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group and regularly travels north to visit friends and family.

It was on one such trip this summer that she fell, breaking her wrist.

Lesley, pictured right,  said: “As we were staying at lodges on Loch Lomond the nearest place for us was the Vale of Leven Hospital, so we went to the Minor Injuries Unit. The staff were lovely and put it in a cast for me and said I would get a call from the RAH fracture clinic the next day.

“That call came as promised, so we travelled to Paisley. I knew it wasn’t going to be pleasant as they were going to manipulate it but in the end it wasn’t bad at all. All the way through they spoke to me so reassuringly and made me feel very safe and well cared for.

“Their calm, engaging and caring approach built my trust and really put me at ease through the whole procedure. They asked me what I did for a living and I said I worked in NHS management. They had already proved to me how good they were at their jobs – asking me was just part of that.”

Lesley started her career in the NHS in Glasgow on the graduate scheme in 1982. Seven years later she was working in London before heading to Scotland again to work in NHS Ayrshire and Arran.

She added: “I have been an NHS Chief Executive for many years. Spending time under the care of this team, I was reminded why I am really proud to be part of the NHS family. They were a true credit to NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.”

NHSGGC Chief Executive Jane Grant, above left,  was pleased to receive the lovely feedback from one of her English counterparts.

Jane said: “I know what great teams we have at the Vale and the RAH, but to hear this first hand always gives me a great sense of pride in our team. I am so glad Lesley felt so well looked after by our staff and went on to enjoy an otherwise safe and pleasant holiday in Scotland.”

Meanwhile, The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a bright light on the significant challenges and risks facing healthcare workers globally, every day.

Frontline healthcare staff are working harder than ever and despite the fear, anxiety, the disruption and the risk which COVID-19 has brought, they continue to deliver high-quality care for patients.

We recognise the great importance and link between keeping our own staff safe and healthy and the impact this has on the overall safety of our patients.

That’s why in recognition of World Patient Safety Day today, we wanted to shine a light one of the key initiatives in place – our R&R hubs – to help support our staff through the pandemic and keep them safe, which has in turn helped ensure they have been able to continue delivering high-quality care to keep our patients safe.


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