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OH has lied about examining me - how to make a formal complaint?

(14 Posts)
BerylStreep Fri 20-May-11 17:24:03

At the start of December last year, I attended the Chief Physio at our occupational health, as I had had surgery on my shoulder last summer. During the examination, she was really rough with me, and injured my shoulder, causing extreme pain and pins and needles and tingling all down my arm which lasted several months. My own physio diagnosed nerve damage and that the joint had been aggravated. I posted about it at the time here as I was in such pain, and distraught that she had set back 5 months of careful rehabilitation.

I had sight today of a letter to my orthopaedic consultant from OH asking for his opinion on my fitness to work, and the letter states 'I have reviewed the contemporaneous notes and due to her being in a distressed state before being examined a very limited physical examination was carried out, mainly only active movements by her which confirmed a full range of movement. Resisted tests were not completed due to her distressed state.'

The letter then goes on to outline why I was in a 'distressed state' i.e. because I have been in discussions with management about increasing my hours, against my wishes, and various childcare difficulties.

The letter ends 'I would also appreciate your comments on her allegation that some new injury followed her examination on 7 December by our Chief Physiotherapist.'

At the time of the examination, the OH did resistance tests on me, despite now stating otherwise. She started on my good arm, and applied a massive amount of pressure. I said to her please not to be so firm with my bad arm, as I would end up in tears. She exerted the same amount of pressure on the bad arm, despite me asking her not to do so. She said to me 'the good news is that you're really strong.' She asked me if I thought it would be painful after the examination, and I replied that I was in absolute agony now, that it was really sore.

Now she is saying that no resistance tests were carried out. I am absolutely gobsmacked and furious.

I reported the matter to work as an injury on duty within hours of the examination, and saw my own physio the next day for treatment. I saw my GP a couple of days later, and my consultant 10 days later. He sent me for a MRI scan the same day, and he has responded in his report that the scan showed 'acromioclavicular joint synovitis and evidence of significant rotator cuff tendinopathy with early delamination of the cuff.' He has said in his report that I had 'an initial excellent response to her surgery followed by quite a marked deterioration as a result of the episode described.'

I am trying to gather my thoughts on this.
1. The OH physio is lying when she says resisted tests were not conducted.
2. I don't what the complaints procedure is - must find out. Although I have reported the matter as an injury on duty, I think I need to submit a formal complaint about the OH's integrity.
3. The letter from OH discusses private information which is not relevant to my shoulder.
4. The final paragraph implies that they do not believe that a further injury was caused.
5. I don't really understand all the medical speak, but my consultant seems to be saying that the medical evidence confirms the injury.

As a first step, I have submitted a data protection request asking for details of all notes, correspondence etc held by the organisation I work for relating to my shoulder. Any thoughts on what I should do? I have an appointment with the Head of OH on Monday.

nickelbabe Fri 20-May-11 17:25:45

You knwo she's lying - you have to state that in a rebuttal.
and then demand that it is investigated further.

Get as much contemporary evidence as you can (use the facts you put on your other thread to help you)

boysrock Fri 20-May-11 17:33:48

Sorry i'm not going to be as much help as I hoped as I can't find a link but I would investigate her professional governing body for assistance.

i wouldn't normally suggest this but as the OH is private and within your company it may be worth persuing.

NHS standards for treeatment of all patietns include gaining informed consent for all intervention, there is very little to justify going against a patients expressed wishes unless this is renegotiated with patient and patient subsequently consents.

Confidentiality - this has to be maintained at all times and any information that professional wishes to share has to be consented to by patient except in exceptional circumstances (child protection)

hth.

BerylStreep Fri 20-May-11 17:48:37

Do you know what the governing body for OH professionals is?

My GP was really supportive of me when this all happened. I may make an appointment with him to show him the report, and see if he can explain the jargon - I have just been googling 'delamination of the cuff' to find out what that means.

BerylStreep Fri 20-May-11 17:49:08

without much luck.

boysrock Fri 20-May-11 18:06:23

www.hpc-uk.org is governing body, not sure about delamination enough to explain it over net, this site may help cks

BerylStreep Sun 22-May-11 08:59:51

boysrock - does the confidentiality issue still apply to correspondence between healthcare professionals? i.e. when I speak to the head of OH tomorrow, would he be able to say that because he was writing to my consultant that confidentiality doesn't apply?

I gave my written consent for OH to seek a report from my consultant, but as far as I am concerned, did not give consent for OH to share confidential and irrelevant details with my consultant. On reading the letter, it comes across as prejudicial.

primalero Sun 22-May-11 10:09:24

I sympathise. In my case my employer used a third-party OH company (we didn't have in-house OH). It was clear that the OH company saw the employer, not me, as their client and I was a bit shock at the disclaimer that I was asked to sign before attending an examination. If you've not done so already, check what you signed - this should give some info on whether the OH company will talk directly to you at all about any complaint. You may also want to speak to an employment lawyer. you may have a phone service through your employment but they don't always get involved with employment law issues. Otherwise most solicitors will give a 30 min consultation free. It's worth trying to find out what the possible scenarios are and being wary of what you do and say to your employer / the OH company until you know what the consequences could be.

I don't mean to worry you innecessarily but IMO it's best to look after your own interests.

primalero Sun 22-May-11 10:12:52

Also - the disclaimer may cover what info the OH company can share with your employer. Officially they shouldn't share confidential info, only talk about your ability or otherwise to carry out duties, but in practice unfortunately this doesn't always happen. much like when you phone in sick you don't have to say the diagnosis, only how long you'll be off for, but most folk say what's wrong with them and then it goes around the office....

boysrock Sun 22-May-11 11:54:04

Yes it does Beryl. Giving them permission to share medical info is one thing but strikes me permission was not sought to share irrelevant info about working arrangements.

boysrock Sun 22-May-11 11:57:58

Confidentiality comes under information governance. It is bad practice to share irrelevant info with others regardless of job title. Imo info about your working hours was irrelevant
had she discussed your job role placing a strain pn your arm that would have been relevant
iywim

BerylStreep Sun 22-May-11 15:32:25

Thank you.

I don't know if I am getting this out of perspective, but I am really really cross about this. I cannot believe that the Physio has lied about the examination - this entire episode has been a complete shambles from the start.

BerylStreep Tue 07-Jun-11 17:54:50

Update: I spoke with the Head of OH, and he said he specifically asked the physio if she conducted the resisted tests, and that she said she didn't. He states that the confidential information was provided to give 'a bit of background'. He said I need to submit a formal written complaint about it.

I have composed a formal letter of complaint, asking for the matter to be investigated, and will copy it to the HPC.

Putthatbookdown Fri 10-Jun-11 07:23:00

I had similar with OH who told me to take medicine for a condition I do not have and also would be tricky alongside my other conditions I think oh are a money guzzling lot who know v little

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