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Conduct and Complaints

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Code of Conduct for Staff

Code of Conduct for Staff

The Board Code of Conduct Policy sets out standards of business conduct including ensuring the interests of patients remains paramount at all times, that all staff are impartial and honest in the conduct of their business and that public funds are used to the best advantage of the service. The Fraud policy is also contained within this document.

The Whistleblowing Policy is also contained within this document and can be accessed by staff to raise a qualifying disclosure under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998. This Policy is available to all staff, including full-time, part-time, temporary, as well as agency and bank workers and ex-staff of NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde.

 All staff have a responsibility to protect patients from risk of harm posed by another colleague’s conduct, performance or health by taking immediate steps to ensure their concerns are dealt with or raised for appropriate investigation. The Board promotes a culture in which staff can raise concerns openly and safely. 

Top Tips on the policy….

1. If a member of staff has a concern about patient safety, malpractice, misconduct, wrongdoing or serious risk at work, they are encouraged to raise these with their Line Manager in the first instance. This may be done verbally or in writing.

  1.  If a member of staff feels unable to raise the matter with their Line Manager or does not think that this would effectively address the concern, or where this action has been tried but has not led to action that addresses the action or addresses it within a reasonable period of time for whatever reason, they should then raise the matter with a designated list of Senior Managers who have been trained to deal with any issues from staff raised under the Whistleblowing arrangements. These Directors are named within the policy.
  2. If Steps One and Two have been followed and the member of staff still has concerns, or if they feel that the matter is so serious that they cannot discuss it with any of the above, they should contact the nominated Non Executive Member (or deputy) of the NHS Board – Contact Details via – john.hamilton@ggc.scot.nhs.uk Tel No. 0141 201 4633.

4. A National Alert Line has been established to provide an additional level of support to staff who wish to raise a concern about practices within NHS Scotland. Public Concern At Work will receive staff’s calls and will offer free, confidential advice on how best to take forward any concerns. Contact Public Concern At Work on Freephone – 0800 008 6112.

Whistleblowing

Whistleblowing Policy

From 1 April 2021, the new National Whistleblowing Standards were implemented and formed the Once for Scotland Whistleblowing Policy.

The National Whistleblowing Standards are available at https://inwo.spso.org.uk/national-whistleblowing-standards

Guidance

How to raise whistleblowing concerns

Recording Whistleblowing Complaints

Bullying and Harassment

Policy and Supporting Documentation

The NHS Scotland Workforce Bullying and Harassment Policy provides a process to ensure that concerns about standards of conduct, inappropriate behaviour or wilful misconduct are managed in a fair, consistent and timely manner.

The purpose of this policy is to support dignity and respect at work and to help foster a positive and dignified workplace culture. The policy describes the courses of action open to members of staff who experience unacceptable or inappropriate behaviour but also how, as an organisation we aim to minimise the incidents of such behaviour occurring in the first place.

For all bullying and harassment claims please use the above link to access the policy and extensive supporting documentation including the Workforce Investigation Process.

To obtain HR Support for the Workforce Investigation Process, please complete the Request to Initiate HR Support.

Mediation

NHS Scotland Workforce policies also provide a guide to supportive conversations and mediation.

Mediation can enable you to improve your working relationship with colleagues and help both parties find the best way forward.

Mediation can be used at any stage of conflict as long as any formal proceedings have been put on hold. Typically it is more effective the earlier on that it is used. However, there may also be situations in which formal proceedings have already taken place where mediation can be invaluable as a way to repair working relationships.

Bullying and Harassment FAQs
What does the Bullying and Harassment policy mean for me?

Everyone has a role to play to ensure we have workplaces where we treat each other with dignity and respect. You should use the launch of this new policy to speak with your colleagues and line manager about the way you work together; to discuss whether people are clear about what is acceptable or not acceptable, including the way you speak to each other, and how you deal with issues. If you have encountered disrespectful behaviour from a colleague, use the new policy to have the confidence to speak up and give feedback.

What resources are available for me to develop confidence and skills to have a difficult conversation or give feedback?

You can build this into your PDP discussion with your Line Manager and get support for this. There are resources available on Staffnet, FTFT online under ‘Our culture’, in particular Hints and Tips for Giving Feedback. You could discuss with a Learning & Education Advisor or an Organisational Development Advisor to see what development options may be available to you. You can also contact the free and confidential Employee Counselling Service if you need advice about tackling a difficult issue that you are experiencing.

What is disrespectful behaviour?

Disrespectful behaviour is defined as “Rude or discourteous behaviour that causes the receiver to feel belittled or insulted or to have their reputation damaged. If left unchecked it creates an uncomfortable or even hostile work environment and could develop into bullying and harassment. Examples include use of demeaning or offensive language, shouting, openly disregarding other’s views, frequent interrupting, being deceptive or manipulative, gossiping behind another’s back (including online), being disruptive or not making a full contribution in the workplace to the detriment of colleagues”.

How is disrespectful behaviour different from bullying and harassment?

Disrespectful behaviour refers to rude or discourteous behaviour that occurs more randomly where the target is not specifically sought out to be the focus of repeated behaviour. Disrespectful behaviour can even be unintentional, hence the reason that it’s better handled one to one between yourselves or locally by your Line Manager.

Bullying is deliberate and repeated targeting of an individual over a period of time.

Harassment is defined legally as unwanted conduct related to a protected characteristic, for example a persons sex, race or sexual orientation, and may either be persistent or an isolated incident.

Allegations of bullying or harassment should be taken directly to your Line Manager (if the issue involves your Line Manager then their Manager should be approached). Such allegations are viewed extremely seriously and will be thoroughly investigated, potentially leading to disciplinary action against the individual(s) involved.

How do I know that there won’t be repercussions from raising concerns about disrespectful behaviour?

If you have taken the step to discuss the issue one to one with the colleague and the situation remains unsatisfactory or becomes worse, then you must discuss the issue with your Line Manager (or the next-in-line manager if the issue involves your immediate Line Manager). The Bullying and Harassment policy formalises a manager’s obligation to listen, discuss and explore the nature of such an issue with you and the need to take steps to resolve it.

If you experience any negative repercussions for raising the issue, this may be deemed to be victimisation. This is defined as detriment suffered by a member of staff as a result of issues or allegations they have raised in good faith, or because they have participated in an associated process, for example as a witness. This is viewed extremely seriously, leading to disciplinary action against the individual if there is evidence of this.

What is Mediation and how might it help if I seem to be having an unfixable issue with a colleague.

Mediation is where an impartial third party, the mediator, helps two or more people in dispute to attempt to reach an agreement. Any agreement comes from those in dispute, not from the mediator. The mediator is not there to judge, to say one person is right and the other wrong, or to tell those involved in the mediation what they should do. The mediator is in charge of the process of seeking to resolve the problem but not in charge of the outcome. In this regard Mediation can be an extremely helpful process, but it is not the first resort. You should always try to first resolve difficulties with a colleague on a one to one basis or by allowing your manager to attempt resolution. If this fails then your Line Manager can arrange for mediation via your local HR Advisor.

Hate Crime

NHSGGC has a comprehensive workforce policy framework designed to protect against bullying and harassment and uphold dignity and respect and the Hate Crime Protocol and Guidance offers support for people who perceive they have been victims or have witnessed a Hate Incident. These tools need to be used and observed incident must be reported to a manager and a Datix report completed
 
There’s no room for complacency. If you see it or hear it, please report it, and help make NHSGGC a better place to work for everyone.

Conduct

Policy and Supporting Documentation

The NHS Scotland Workforce Conduct Policy provides a process to ensure that concerns about standards of conduct, inappropriate behaviour or wilful misconduct are managed in a fair, consistent and timely manner. This applies to employees and workers, including back, agency and sessional workers. It does not apply when reviewing the professional conduct or competence of medical or dental staff.

For all conduct cases please use the above link to access the policy and extensive supporting documentation including the Workforce Investigation Process.

To obtain HR Support for the Workforce Investigation Process, please complete the Request to Initiate HR Support.

PVG Referral Pathway

Guidance and the Referral Pathway flowchart on PVG and the Duty to refer. 

Guidance on PVG and Duty to Refer

PVG Referral Pathway

The PVG referral form can be downloaded via the following link (see ‘How to send a referral’ section):

MyGov Scotland PVG Referral Form

Contact the HR Support and Advice Unit if you require further information or clarification.

Grievance

Policy and Supporting Documentation

The NHS Scotland Workforce Grievance Policy provides a process to ensure that concerns about standards of conduct, inappropriate behaviour or wilful misconduct are managed in a fair, consistent and timely manner.

For all grievance cases please use the above link to access the policy and extensive supporting documentation including the Workforce Investigation Process.

To obtain HR Support for the Workforce Investigation Process, please complete the Request to Initiate HR Support.