Lord Brodie has urged anyone with information that could assist the Scottish Hospitals Inquiry to get in touch, having met with representatives of affected patients and families.
The independent Inquiry is investigating the construction of the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital Campus (QEUH) in Glasgow and the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People and Department of Clinical Neurosciences (RHCYP/DCN) in Edinburgh.
In a video appeal Lord Brodie, Chair of Inquiry, said that his “priority” is for “further engagement with families and those who have been affected to listen to what they have to say”.
The Inquiry will determine how issues relating to adequacy of ventilation, water contamination and other matters impacted on patient safety and care and whether these issues could have been prevented.
It will also examine the impacts of these issues on patients and their families and whether the buildings provide a suitable environment for the delivery of safe, effective care. It will make recommendations to ensure any past mistakes are not repeated in future NHS infrastructure projects.
Lord Brodie said: “We have reached out to a wide range of those who are interested in the work of the Inquiry and met with a number of those including representatives of patients and their families at both Hospitals, and gained very helpful insights from these conversations.
“We have begun to gather and familiarise ourselves with relevant documentation, including material provided as a result of my earlier appeal for anyone with information to get in touch.
“Together, these insights and documentation have informed the process of identifying the specific lines of investigation which the Inquiry will pursue.”
Lord Brodie’s video update also describes the considerable progress made since the launch in August 2020 and lays out priorities for the coming year. Recent developments include the recruitment of researchers, information and document managers, solicitors and counsel.
Lord Brodie said: “As the year draws to a close, I am pleased with the progress made so far. The Inquiries Act 2005 requires an Inquiry to be set up from scratch meaning lots of groundwork must be done in the first instance.
“We have been doing this while contending with the changing circumstances and restrictions arising from Covid-19. Despite this, we have recruited a strong team to further engage with families and affected parties, building on the work of the past few months.
“I issued a call to those applying for core participant status earlier this year to do so before 31 December 2020 and the deadline for consideration isn’t far off. Irrespective of core participant status, we encourage anyone who has any information pertaining to the Terms of Reference of the Inquiry to please come forward and share this with us. Our Terms of Reference and contact details can be found on the website.”
The Inquiry website includes contact details and further information on the Terms of Reference and can be accessed here - www.hospitalsinquiry.scot
Video update from Lord Brodie can be accessed here: https://youtu.be/UXZue9AEhvA