Hus­band and wife doc­tor duo to join team of vol­un­teers

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen) - - NEWS -

The new­est re­cruits to Scot­land’s busiest moun­tain res­cue team have cer­tainly proved they are in peak prac­tice for the job.

Hus­band-and-wife doc­tors, Iain and Gemma Munro, went on train­ing with Cairn­gorm Moun­tain Res­cue Team for the first time yes­ter­day.

They said they were de- lighted to be join­ing the vol­un­teer res­cuers, par­tic­u­larly in the build-up to the busy win­ter sea­son when there is most need for their ser­vices.

Given their sur­names, you might ex­pect the Munros to be ex­cel­lent moun­taineers – and they have proved that by climb­ing abroad, in­clud­ing in the Alps.

The Aviemore-based cou­ple joined Cairn­gorm MRT at the week­end.

It brings the to­tal num- ber of doc­tors among the 42 res­cuers to six, with Dun­can Scott, Boyd Pe­ters, Gill Irvine and Chris Robin­son also part of the group.

It now means that there should be at least one doc­tor on ev­ery res­cue.

In fact, the team prob­a­bly now boasts more GPs than any other moun­tain res­cue or­gan­i­sa­tion in the coun­try.

Team leader Wil­lie An­der­son joked: “We have more doc­tors than the NHS.

“In ad­di­tion, vir­tu­ally all our team mem­bers are qual­i­fied in first aid at vary­ing lev­els.

“Iain and Gemma are very ex­pe­ri­enced moun­taineers and are ready to go out on res­cues now. They will be very good as­sets for the team. “It is very im­por­tant to get the in­jured into the hands of pro­fes­sion­als as quickly as pos­si­ble. It can be the dif­fer­ence be­tween life and death.

“And now, with six doc­tors in the team, we should be able to have at least one of them on most call-outs, which is tremen­dous.”

Mr and Mrs Munro work at the For­res Health and Care Cen­tre GP Prac­tices, but Mr An­der­son said their hours mean they will be avail­able to the Cairn­gorm team on a reg­u­lar ba­sis.

He added: “It has been a quiet sum­mer – although we have had a few res­cues to keep us busy, we have now started our win­ter train­ing, get­ting ready for what will in­evitably come.

“That in­cludes things like avalanche train­ing, work­ing with the res­cue he­li­copter and win­ter tech­niques.

“We deal with about 50 call-outs a year – most of them in the win­ter.

“So we are get­ting ready for the sea­son ahead.”

Iain Munro said: “We are de­lighted to be join­ing the moun­tain res­cue team.

“It is some­thing we have been think­ing of do­ing for a while. We both have a pas­sion for the out­doors and we think bring­ing our med­i­cal ex­pe­ri­ence into the team will be of ben­e­fit.”

Orig­i­nally from Aberdeen, the cou­ple, both 29, want another chal­lenge.

Iain said: “We are both young and are keen to help on the hills. We are re­ally look­ing for­ward to it.” Joanna Lum­ley, pic­tured, has said tech­nol­ogy has “in­ten­si­fied” the lone­li­ness felt by el­derly peo­ple.

The ac­tress, 71, said the art of “ev­ery­day chit-chat” is at risk of dy­ing out.

Lum­ley said she does not use self-ser­vice check­outs in the su­per­mar­ket as she prefers to queue at the till for “the pure joy of the hu­man con­tact it in­volves”.

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