Scottish Health Campaigns Network


Saturday 14th February 2009

1)      Apologies

Lambert Sinclair

Evelyn McKechnie

Patrick Trust

Isobel Vernolini

Eileen Gorie



Robert Cumming (Chair)

George Venters ( Vice-chair)

Malcolm Allan

John Winton

Ruth Winton

David Atiyah

Vivien Dance

Bill Lawrie

Margaret Hinds

Evelyn Hide

Ken Barr

James Sandeman

Alistair Glen

Jean Turner

Margaret Watt

Julie McAnulty


2)      Minutes of AGM 19th Jan. 2008

Acceptance proposed by MW and seconded by MH.


3)      Matters arising from the above minute.


There were no matters arising from this which would not be dealt with in the Chairman’s report.


4)      Chairman’s report.


This had been circulated to delegates in advance of the meeting.

The chairman added that MA had attended a conference at Dunblane in April organised by the Scottish government.  The subject was ‘Better Cancer Care’and a response was submitted on behalf of the Network.


5)      Treasurer’s report.

The treasurer was unable to attend but had made the accounts available to MA.

Balance at the RBS bank on 30/12/08 stood at £900.08. This compared to the balance at 31/12/07 of £946.22

The treasurer had advised the secretary that, in his opinion, the subscriptions should remain unchanged at £50 per group with contributions from individuals.

Proposed by MA and seconded by JW.




6)      Auditors report.


The auditors, KB and JW, signed off the accounts acceptance of which were proposed by MA and seconded by MW. The auditors were thanked by the chair.


7)      Media report.


This had been circulated in advance by MA who thanked E McK in her absence, for maintaining the website.


8)      Election of Office Bearers.



The Chairman offered to remain in that capacity for at least a further year if this was the wish of delegates. This was agreed unanimously.



GV proposed by KB and seconded by MW

At this point GV suggested that a further VC be appointed to represent rural and other specialised interests. An EGM would be required to alter the constitution and after general discussion no formal proposal was put forward.




The secretary had been unable to attend but as she had not indicated otherwise, it was assumed that she was prepared to continue in Office.  The meeting endorsed this view.


The positions of Treasurer, Media contact and Auditors will remain as before.


9)      Minutes of 13th Dec. 2008.

These had been previously circulated. Acceptance proposed by MW and seconded by JW.


10)  Matters arising from above minute.


Geoff. Maudsley, director of Think Tank Reform Scotland has agreed to come to the next meeting and RC will confirm.

GV suggested inviting Prof. Allyson Pollock. This was discussed but it was decided not to pursue this.

Bill Lawrie suggested that, if GM confirms attendance, the media be so informed.


Overnight beds at Stobhill Hospital.

In view of the estimated cost of around £16m RC reported that there was uncertainty as to whether funding would be available.



10 (cont)

Re para5 in the minutes, there has been no response from NS about problems with IT and there has been no further information about BECAD.


Re para 7 (Fife) JW spoke on issue of single beds and that Balfour Beattie has indicated that four bedded rooms could be divided into 2 twosingle bedded rooms but that this would result in a reduction of beds.

JS spoke on the issue of numbers of single beds in the new Southern General Hospital and the difficulty of establishing accurate figures. 1309 single beds are likely to be established out of a total of around 2000 beds.


11)Vale of Leven Hospital.


VD gave a full report. Consultation finished at the end of January. Leaflets distributed to all households and 19 public meetings took place, each lasting about three hours. GPs support being responsible for provision of unscheduled care/treatment with stroke and heart attack victims being taken to Paisley RI. GPs may be able to retain about 76% of unscheduled admissions.  However, 10 consultants from PRI have written to GPs stating that they cannot support principle, so the debate remains open.

Three locum anaesthetists who are retiring will be replaced by three based in Paisley.

PT has prepared a summary which will be circulated to delegates.

C. difficile remains subject of police investigation.


12)  St Margaret’s Hospice, Clydebank (with 30 beds)


NHSGG and Clyde propose new build at Blawarthill but nothing in place. Intention is to change basis to that of a Care Home rather than a hospice for the terminally ill.

Decision may be postponed until 2012

It was reported that Roseanne Cunningham has a Private Members Bill looking at palliative care in Scotland with a closing date for responses of  28th February.

KB proposed that a Press Release be put out by the Network stating the concern expressed by the SPA and the SHCN relating to the future of St Margarets Hospice. He agreed to liaise with MA about the content.


13)  Reports from Groups.


Fife: JW question whether the £150m PFI funding for the new hospital in Fife was still in place. He has previously drawn attention to the fact that this figure was first estimated three years ago and has not been revised.

Local Health Concern will meet with NHSFife on a six monthly basis.


Glasgow Health Forum South East:

JS reported that IT in ACADs will be “in house” as opposed to being provided by an outside contractor. Paper information will be scanned.  North and South Monitoring Groups will raise this at the next meeting on 5th March.



13 (cont)


David Atiyah, who had been introduced to delegates at the start of the meeting, spoke about mental health in NHSLothian and the concern about relocation of existing provision to a new build at Little France.



KB reported that there had been a lack of consultation about the possible closure of a Care Home in Lochgilphead.   As a result of protests, no decision will take made until such time as a consultation exercise has taken place.


14)  Next meeting with Nicola Sturgeon.


The SHCN await a date to be offered by NS. A meeting of SHCN will take place prior to then to agree topics.


15)  AOB


Discussion took place on the End of Life Bill to be introduced by Independent MSP, Margo MacDonald. The consultation will remain open until 9th March.


MH on behalf of GHFSE supported open discussion.

Distinction was drawn between the principles outlined and physician assisted suicide.

JMcA expressed concern on the widespread nature of the Bill and of the legal framework.

GV expressed the view that choice should lie with patients of sound mind.

MW referred to Human Rights Bill of 1998

JT emphasised importance of improving quality of palliative care and access to expert care provided in hospices.


MRSA:  JS reported that all Health Boards are required to implement schemes by April 2009. He questioned how Boards are to implement control over day surgery.


Minor Injury Units: JW questioned whether any information had been made available to the public about what would be provided at minor injury units.

Patient surveys about hospital care will be piloted over six months in Fife, Dumfries and Greater Glasgow and Clyde.


16)  Date of next meeting.


To be advised when the Chairman receives date of meeting with NS ( see 14)


The meeting closed with a Vote of Thanks to the Chair.


Malcolm Allan

20 Feb 2009