On the Rounds

THE Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh has re-elected its president to serve a sixth year in office, making him the longest-serving president in almost 250 years.

Professor Neil Douglas was first elected in 2004 and will serve until 2010. He will be supported by Professor Brian Frier, who has been elected as the body's vice-president for a period of three years.

• JEANETTE Gaul has been reappointed as the chair of the Angus Public Partnership (Health) Group. The organisation works with NHS Tayside to ensure the views of the local community are taken into account when formulating health policy in the region.


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THE valuable experience of older nurses could be lost to the NHS in Scotland if the Scottish Government does not intervene, according to a report by the Royal College of Nursing in Scotland.

The organisation has called on Holyrood to set up a national forum including representatives of employers, trade unions and professional organisations to investigate ways in which older nurses can be retained.

According to the RCN, one in three nurses working in the community sector of the NHS is an "older" nurse – generally considered to be those aged over 50.

• THE A&E departments of Glasgow and Clyde recorded their busiest day in history last week – with the icy conditions blamed for the increase in patients.

The five departments hosted 1,906 emergency patients, beating the previous record of 1,583 by 20 per cent and the daily average by about 55 per cent.

The NHS board reported that 96 per cent of all patients were discharged from A&E within the four-hour target.

• A CLINIC to help people suffering from persistent pain will open in Dundee on Monday. The alternative health clinic, which uses "bio-energy" therapy to treat patients, will be held in the city's Apex Hotel.

• A FREE telephone counselling service for disabled people in Scotland was launched last week.

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The pilot scheme – called Your Call – will offer access to professionally qualified disabled volunteer counsellors for disabled people and their families.

• A NEW clinical research facility and clinical investigations unit has been opened at the Tayside Children's Hospital at Ninewells in Dundee.

A joint venture between NHS Tayside and Dundee University, the centre will carry out research into children's diseases in collaboration with the Scottish Medicines for Children Network.


A NEW technique to clean stainless steel surgical instruments using electrolysis was among the five Scottish winners at the recent UK Medical Futures Innovations Awards.

The cleaning method, which removes bacteria much faster than traditional techniques, has been developed by Strathclyde-based Synergy Health.

It was one of three winners in the dentistry and oral health section of the awards.

An infra-red imaging technique that avoids the need for dental X-rays created by Dundee University was named a winner in this section, and research into a vaccine against dental caries was given a commendation.

Greater Glasgow Health Board and Glasgow University were named winners in the ophthalmology section, alongside Queen Margaret Hospital in Dunfermline.

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• AILSA Hospital's Ballantrae ward has won a national award in recognition of its mental health services.

The ward's nursing team was presented with the good practice prize at the recent Mental Health Nursing Forum Scotland Awards for its work operating the "Tidal Mode" of recovery theory.

Patients using the system record their feelings in a diary throughout their treatment.

At the same awards, the Alcohol Relapse Management Team and the A&E Alcohol Liaison Service of NHS Ayrshire and Arran were also commended for their work.

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