Scottish Health Campaigns Network


 Minutes of meeting on 15th June 2013



Julie McAnulty (Chair)                                                Dr David Williams (Vice Chair)

James Sandeman (Secretary)                           Dr Patrick Trust (Treasurer)


Ken Barr          (Cowal)                                    Margaret Hinds            (Health Forum SE)

Alastair Glen    (Health Forum SE)                   Anne Hughes     )        (Renfrewshire

Tom Herbert    (Stobhill)                                  Catherine Hughes)       (re Centre for

(    Integrative Care


1) Apologies:   Eileen Gorie (Vale of Leven)   Dr George Venters       (Edinburgh)


2) Minutes of 20th April:                                                                                      Actions

a) Approval proposed by Dr Patrick Trust, seconded by Margaret Hinds.  Adopted.


b) Actions: 4) Papers for change of bank signatories all in hand for submission by them.


8) Cross Border Healthcare: JMcA confirmed she had submitted a SHCN response to the Scottish Government consultation.  Particular areas of concern included:

(i) eHealth data sharing, due to data protection issues.  KB drew attention to problems in Cowal due to conflicting approaches by NHS Highland and NHSGGC.

(ii) Definition of “undue delay” as grounds for a patient to seek treatment outside their own area.

Concern also over a possible influx of elderly patients from England seeking better care of chronic conditions.                 Response to be forwarded to members                JMcA/JS


c) Other matters arising:

11) AOCB, Homeopathic Hospital: CH confirmed that the Centre for Integrative Care (CIC) had been repainted and although it has now re-opened it still looks closed.  The Homeopathic now only has 7 beds, leaving no cushion for emergencies.  JMcA reported comments that the Homeopathic was unlikely to obtain national funding on its own.

This led to discussion of the Government proposal for a national inpatient chronic pain centre, subject of a forthcoming consultation (July to September), and its possible siting at the CIC.  CH reported on numbers of patients currently going to Bath for treatment.      JMcA will write to NHSGGC Chairman.                                           JMcA

9) Stroke: MH stressed the importance of (and ignorance regarding) obtaining early interventions.  PT suggested progress was being made – coronary intervention was now active, and it may take time for stroke care to follow suit.


3) Reports:

    Treasurer reported subscriptions received: HSFSE and Stobhill group.  Balance ±£850

Groups:      MH reported on visit to HSFSE this week by Andrew Robertson (Chairman, NHSGGC).  Issues raised included transport to the new Southern General, and signage for the Minor Injuries Unit (MIU) at the NewVictoria.

She also reported that in view of widespread ignorance about opening hours and services at the MIU the Forum were considering circulating a leaflet.  KB suggested the Community Health Forum might help.

For Cowal KB reported on the threatened closure of the Struan Lodge care home, despite its consistently high rating.  Private homes were closing because Councils paid them a lower rate than to their own care homes.


4) Meeting with Cabinet Secretary:  

JMcA has had an acknowledgement of her request for a meeting, but no date has yet been offered.  She stressed the likelihood that our time with him would be limited.  Questions would presumably be required in advance, to allow Alec Neil to respond properly.


a) Integrated Care in a District Hospital: PT stated his draft paper would be further refined before submission to the Cabinet Secretary.  The model worked up in West Dunbartonshire was a response to public demand for a level of provision which now included 24-hour MIU with X-ray at Vale of Level: a model which could work in inner city areas as well, including the ACADs.

GP support is essential, and involves special training to equip GPs to run the service.  In the absence of anaesthetics cover this includes resuscitation, and is a step up from the current GEMS cover.  Younger GPs are more ready to sign up, partly because it enables them to maintain the skills they have more recently acquired in hospital.  Consultants had been cool, but are warming to the model: among other things it has shown that GPs can recognise severe cases requiring transfer to acute (facilitated by the national retrieval service recently introduced), and the service does not accept “dangerous” cases such as drug overdoses, severe asthma or stroke.

The model works because it combines Primary, Secondary and Ambulance to provide the service people want.  Positive talks continue with the Scottish College of GPs, and the College of Physicians in London are showing an interest.


b) Outpatient Chemotherapy at Stobhill: the anomalies in the apparent statistical basis for the decision not to provide the service were aired.  Catchment area has not been confirmed by NHSGGC.

TH has contacted the H Board Chairman, the Cabinet Secretary and the Leader of East Dunbartonshire Council.  Local press are ready to take the issue up again when appropriate.

PT pointed out that NHSGGC had wanted to cease Chemo at Vale of Leven, and closed the pharmacy there.  However, the Beatson now dispenses drugs for all Glasgow Chemo treatment centres, and the Vale has two specialist nurses who can prescribe.  A Consultant Oncologist at the Beatson can set up a treatment plan for local delivery, and is available to visit as required.

Vale of Leven has been provided with space for an oncology/chemotherapy centre, which has been equipped by £100,000 in locally-raised funds

Agreed SHCN would contact NHSGGC Chairman to request a meeting including TH, PT and JS.                                                                                                                  JS


c) Out of Hours (Rural): KB reported on Cowal experience, with various options being reduced to one which had been rejected by doctors and staff.  Staffing is therefore by locums.

A short life working group is to monitor progress, but the underlying dichotomy between NHS Highland and NHSGGC remains, including negotiations with BMA.

Meantime the CHP is faced with a need to make 25% savings over a 7 year period.


d) Stroke: Discussion following MH’s earlier comments led to a suggestion that we ask for the current protocol on CT scanning of stroke victims.


e) Integration of Health & Social Care: the consultation closed last year and the Bill is expected this year.  Possible sources of friction between the partners include ring-fenced funding and the alignment of two very distinct cultures.  Primary care will require major expansion to cope with an ageing population – if it can be funded.

The proposed legislation seems geared to elderly care, at the expense of children and vulnerable adults.

Mention of EU doctors practising here – their qualifications are accepted but with no test of their ability to consult in English.

IT and data sharing will be an important element.  AG to investigate.              AG


f) Cross Border Healthcare/European Directive: JMcA spoke of many elements to be studied.  Scotland can expect increased demand, while payment for health care may be slow in coming through.


g) Mental Health: unfortunately RMacD was not in attendance, as we have some catching up to do on this topic.



Ÿ     Agreed to presentation pens for founder office bearers.  JMcA to investigate.  JMcA


6. NEXT MEETING: Saturday 31st August (subject to confirmation the room is free)          JS