Director’s Blog: Kick starting 2018

Happy New Year!

We’ve kick started 2018 with pace as we saw teams across health and social care pull together in the face of massive demand.  I’ve been out and about, speaking to staff across Queen Margaret, Glenrothes and Victoria Hospitals and in offices where I can to say thanks.   I’ll do more of that in the next couple of weeks.


Teams at Queen Margaret Hospital

 Although it was a challenging time, partnership working and the discharge multi-disciplinary team pulling together, got the results required and we were still able to work in a person centred approach.”  Marjorie Melia, Social Worker, Discharge Hub, Victoria Hospital

 “Staff from all professions throughout Fife worked together to achieve the best possible outcomes for patients during this very busy and challenging time.”  Wendy Arthur, Team Manager, Older People Hospital Team based in Glenrothes

 What a show of resilience, professionalism and care in the face of such pressure with colleagues working on days off and doing extremely long hours.   Huge thanks to everyone involved.  I am extremely proud of our services.  But, of course, winter isn’t behind us yet.  Which is a timely reminder.  If you haven’t had your flu jab – get it now!

In other news, this month sees the launch our Fife Carer Strategy Consultation ahead of legislation which comes into force in April.  Running from now until the 23 February, the voice of unpaid carers will shape and inform our Carers Strategy for Fife (2018-2021) so I encourage colleagues who are in contact with unpaid carers to ask them to get involved. Indeed, you may be a carer yourself.  We need to hear your views.

Our Guest Blog features Health Promotions Manager, Ruth Bennett and the campaigns which the team are leading.

Looking ahead, and in light of the Scottish Government draft budget announcement in December 2017, we are working with our key funding partners to understand the financial impact for the Health and Social Care Partnership.

It is clear at this early stage that next year will see a significant financial challenge.  We will have to work closer together than ever to bring about the transformation required across and within services.

Last year we saw many fantastic examples of innovation, many of which are highlighted in the Change Project section of our re-vamped webpages (which includes a new section for staff – Let’s Connect.)  These underline the invaluable knowledge, expertise, skills, experience and resilience you and your teams bring in order to deliver complex change whilst keep the needs of the person at the heart.  I am confident that together, we can build on these successes as we go through 2018.







Director’s Blog: Festive Wishes

The countdown to Christmas and New Year is in full swing and we end the year on a high note. I am delighted to announce that the Care At Home team has been shortlisted as finalists in the Fife Business Awards 2018 for the successful roll out of Total MobileCongratulations.  This fantastic achievement epitomises the resilience, compassion and hard work of colleagues across the Partnership.  Despite the complexity and challenges we face, you and your colleagues are achieving great things and making a difference to peoples’ lives each and every day.  Check out the lovely letter from a service user following support from Older People team colleagues.

I am mindful that many of you will be working over Christmas and New Year, spending time away from your families and loved ones to support others.  Thank you to everyone for your commitment, care and support for people and indeed, the comradeship and support for each other.   I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and best wishes for 2018.



Director’s Blog: A time of change

Welcome to my last (or maybe second last) blog of the year.  What a quick year it’s been.  Lots achieved and lots to be proud of.  Of course, progress is impossible without change and as we move towards a new year, it’s very clear that 2018 will bring both.  I want to be open and honest with you about the financial challenges we face in common with all public services. These were top of the agenda at the recent Partnership Board meeting where 17 proposals were put forward. Find out more here.

In everything we do the involvement of you and your colleagues remains vital.  When we look back at 2017 there is a wealth of fantastic work which you should be proud of.  Just one example is the light currently being shone by Macmillan Scotland on the Transforming Care After Treatment Programme (TCAT) of which Fife has played a significant part.  I was recently at an event in the Parliament about this great work with its focus on enhancing patient and carer experience.  Look out for more details in the New Year on our work to take this forward for Fife.

Our partnership with See Me and Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) continues.  Staff are sharing their personal stories through our Pass the Badge Campaign – check out their stories  – and with our promotion on social media hitting over 6,000 views and reaching over 55,000 people for this year’s World Mental Health Day, the drive to develop mental health services further in Fife has never been more in focus, with a new mental health strategy being developed by the team.

Although there are big challenges ahead, there’s lots to celebrate including our winners at the recent Scottish Health Awards and now our Modern Apprentice, Rebecca Band who is on the shortlist for the Rising Star Award in Cosla’s 2017 Public Service Awards.

As we move into the depths of winter, keeping good physical wellbeing is important as we work round the clock to deliver vital services.  When it comes to flu, we’re doing our bit in getting our flu jags but we need to do more so I encourage all of you to become a Flu Fighter – get your jag today.

As you would expect at this time of year, our Winter plan is in full swing and I’m grateful to everyone involved.

Remember keep in touch by signing up to my blog and encourage others to check out this new site for news and update.   Thank you.



Director’s Blog: Welcome to our new site


Welcome to our brand new one stop shop for staff news and updates about what is going on in and around the Partnership. This site is a step towards a more creative, timely and responsive channel of communication for you and your colleagues. This is in response to the feedback from staff as we start to deliver large programmes of transformation across the Partnership to bring care closer to home.

Mindful of our front line colleagues, we’ve made our staff site available through the new public website so information can be accessed from home. Updates and briefings will still continue through your line management as team briefing sessions.  All colleagues can subscribe to my monthly Blog.  This will give you an alert to your mobile phone as another way to connect with what’s going on when you are out and about. Indeed we want to hear from you.  Have you got an idea on how we can make services better for people or improve the way we work together? Click on the new Bright Ideas Button to get them in to me and the team.

So, check out the site and let us know what you think by dropping a line to We want to hear from you!



Director’s Blog: Celebrating Success


July sees us continue to celebrate the success of you and your colleagues.

And there’s plenty more opportunities to get your work recognised through this year’s Scottish Health Awards.  We have fantastic partnership work going on so please get nominating.  You’ve got a lot to be proud of.


Note our article on iMatter, which is the employee engagement survey which all Partnership staff will use to have their views on the workplace heard. iMatter launches at the end of the month so speak to your manager and prepare to have your say.


We also introduce some of our latest campaigns and importantly, a significant new programme of work to review Urgent Care Services. This work is just one of many of our reviews as part of our journey to seamless care routes and bring care closer to home across communities.




Director’s Blog: Reaching Communities

I was recently asked to present to the Scottish Parliament’s Health and Sports Committee – the main topic we had to evidence was engagement with key stakeholders against our Strategic Plan, Localities Plan and Integration Scheme.

When preparing for this, it struck me just how much has been achieved by you and your colleagues.  You have involved users of services, carers, partners, each other and many, many more over the years.

This drive continues with an unwavering energy and momentum as we move forward with initiatives to try to improve services and make a difference to people’s lives.

You can read about many of these in these webpages.  We welcomed Professor Jason Leitch to Fife as part of our Community Services Visioning event, profile the new carers’ services in the Victoria Hospital and take stock of how far we have come since the early days of Total Mobile as we transform Care at Home.

I am also very aware that there are many, many other activities going on and I thank everyone who is working so hard to make integration in Fife become a reality.  On the subject of staying connected, my new Twitter account is now up and running.  You can follow me @FifeHSCP  #letsconnectFife




Director’s Blog: Get Connected

Spring has finally sprung (well just) and our April edition brings you another swathe of activity across the Partnership.

Our ‘Creating Healthy Communities’ events have kick started and I was delighted to attend and see so many people get involved.

As promised I am keen to keep you informed of key decisions being made at the IJB.  I sent an email to all staff at the time and this bulletin is another opportunity to ensure you are all kept informed.

On the 23 March, Board Members approved a Revenue Budget of £475m for 2017/18 and a package of measures to support the delivery of health and social care services across Fife.

The decision will help us develop further models of care in the community.  Importantly, Members noted examples of significant action being taken across the health and social care profession to help bring efficiencies and change the way we are working.

This month, check out:

Creating Healthy Communities Events

IJB Update

  • Chief Nursing Officer Visit
  • Mental Health Matters
  • Glenrothes ‘Dementia Friendly’
  • Community Hospitals Update
  • Queens Award
  • SDS News

Finally, I encourage all of you to help support Fife’s See Me Campaigns and take part in Alzheimer’s Scotland’s survey where we are working in partnership with them to help make Glenrothes ‘Dementia Friendly’.


Director’s Blog: Moving Forward

Highlighting he range and variety of the work we do to care and support our service users is important. Everyone has an important role to play as we aim to keep improving our performance and deliver high quality services.

Our Integration Joint Board meets every two months to scrutinise the work of the Partnership.

At February’s meeting we discussed the budget for 2017/18. We still don’t know exactly what it will be but we do know there are challenges ahead.  New ways of working will help us make considerable savings and we are working closely with NHS Fife colleagues to create a plan to transform the way we run and deliver our services. So these are also exciting times with many opportunities ahead to make things even better.

I hope you’ll support the ‘Walk A Mile’ event on 29 March at Silverburn and Stratheden if you can.

The idea is to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes by being paired with a mental health practitioner to learn a bit about mental health issues.  It’s open to the general public as well as people with lived experience of mental health issues and it’s a great way to combat stigma.

Check out:

  • IJB Update
  • Local Partnership Co-Chairs
  • Call for Poster Abstracts
  • Electroconvulsive Therapy Accreditation
  • A great START
  • Locality Planning
  • Hospital Discharge Service
  • Be SWIFT
  • Top honours
  • New Formulary
  • Community Cancer Care
  • Walk a Mile

Director’s Blog: Here’s to 2017

There’s been plenty more activity across teams and services to take forward our transformation agenda.  Prompted by proposals in our Financial Recovery Plan, IJB Members agreed that options for service change should start to be explored by the Partnership’s management team.  This will begin with a conversation with you and your colleagues, so managers will be coming out to speak to you in the weeks and months ahead.

We’ve even had colleagues take part in a fly on the wall BBC documentary which is airing this month!

I have continued to get out and about. I visited the West Fife Community Support Service and saw some of the great work they do, attended a very successful Allied Health Professional Conference at Lynebank, spoke to a conference of Scottish psychiatrists about our ambitions for mental health, visited some group homes for people with learning disabilities and spent time speaking to families of those we support in those services.

I also took time out of the daily round of meetings and decision making to meet with members of the Participation and Engagement Network (PEN). Made up of public, patient and service user forum reps, they will start to get involved in some of our service change pilots. This is great and will feature more in future news.

All in all it has been a pretty busy 2016.  As we look to the holidays, colleagues across the services, including volunteers, will continue to ensure people are cared for and critical work is covered.

Wishing you all a peaceful and safe Christmas and New Year.