Health board will re­place nurse

Cam­paigner to re­main vig­i­lant

Rutherglen Reformer - - News - Dou­glas Dickie

NHS La­nark­shire has con­firmed a new, spe­cial­ist Parkin­son’s nurse will be em­ployed af­ter pres­sure from a Cam­bus­lang man.

Harry Hay ap­proached the Re­former in May ex­press­ing his concern af­ter Parkin­son’s nurse Elaine Thomp­son was quit­ting her role.

The 68-year-old said he was worried the health board would not pro­vide a like-for-like re­place­ment, but last week they con­tacted Harry and James Kelly MSP, say­ing the role would be filled.

A let­ter signed by chief ex­ec­u­tive Calum Camp­bell also said they would re­view ser­vice pro­vi­sion in the re­gion to see if “any fur­ther en­hance­ments can be made.”

But Harry this week urged cau­tion and said he would be hold­ing NHS La­nark­shire to its word.

“We were dis­cussing it at our monthly Parkin­son’s branch meet­ing last week, and the con­sen­sus was that most peo­ple don’t trust them.

“The one good thing is they are say­ing it’s a Parkin­son’s nurse we are get­ting rather than a nurse with an in­ter­est in Parkin­son’s, but that’s not to say they won’t change that.

“They also don’t tell us when she’ll be re­placed. They have tem­po­rary ar­range­ment in place now but, off the top of my head, there are 900 pa­tients to deal with and that’s too much for one nurse.”

Harry had raised the is­sue with Glas­gow MSP James Kelly. The pair had pre­vi­ously cam­paigned for a sec­ond Parkin­son’s nurse in La­nark­shire.

Mr Kelly said: “This is pos­i­tive news and it is en­cour­ag­ing that the NHS board has lis­tened to the con­cerns of lo­cal groups.

“I will be con­tin­u­ing to mon­i­tor this sit­u­a­tion care­fully and en­sure that peo­ple with Parkin­son’s re­ceive the re­sources and care they de­serve.”

Maria Docherty, nurse di­rec­tor at South La­nark­shire Health and So­cial Care Part­ner­ship, said: “We are cur­rently re­cruit­ing to re­place one of our full-time Parkin­son’s nurse spe­cial­ists posts.

“We have re­ceived some in­ter­est and in­ter­views will take place next month with a view to fill the va­cancy as soon as pos­si­ble.

“Cov­er­ing ar­range­ments will re­main in place un­til the new Parkin­son’s nurse spe­cial­ist starts and we will en­sure pa­tients re­ceive what­ever sup­port they need dur­ing this time to con­tinue their safe and ap­pro­pri­ate care.

“As al­ways, we are keen to im­prove our ser­vices for peo­ple with Parkin­son’s and want to con­sider the ser­vice pro­vi­sion across the whole path­way of care.

“We met with Parkin­son’s UK last week to dis­cuss pos­si­bil­i­ties of closer links with them and fu­ture joint train­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties with staff. Once our new Parkin­son’s nurse is in post the they will link with partners such as Parkin­son’s UK to en­sure we are in a po­si­tion to best meet pa­tients’ needs.”

Cam­paignHarry Hay (right) and Glas­gow MSP James Kelly pre­vi­ously fought for a sec­ond Parkin­son’s nurse in La­nark­shire

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