NHS Scotland Event Day 2 by @PAG1962 & @craigwhitephd

This week saw the annual 2 day NHS Scotland Event 2014 held at the SECC on 3rd and 4th June. Paul Gray blogged about day 1 on the Ayrshirehealth blog and it can be read here. Paul is joined by Professor Craig White in blogging about day 2 below.


NHSScot 16Paul Gray. Chief Executive, NHS Scotland and Director General, Health and Social care





Day 2 and more to motivate and inspire. The opening speech by Cabinet Secretary Alex Neil emphasises, among other things, the critical importance of putting the experience of patients at the centre of what we do.  I had some important conversations with the unsung heroes of primary care – particularly the AHPs, who have so much to offer, and great insights into what would make a real difference to patients as we move forward with the integration of health and social care. 

NHSScot 17NHS Board Chief Executives met in the middle of the day. One issue that created animated discussion was the vexed question of banning smoking on NHS property, and enforcement of any such ban. Chief Executive of Health Scotland, Gerry McLaughlin @McLGerry is going to develop some proposals for discussion.


NHSScot 8Sally Magnusson hosted a lovely closing plenary, drawing on three short case studies which set out our approach to engaging with patients, families and carers at every life stage to design services which genuinely meet patient needs. Her deceptively gentle but incisive interviewing style drew out some important points about the way we engage with our workforce and the people we serve, to deliver in a way that makes a real difference to people’s lives.




So, in an event designed to enhance our understanding of what works, and to energise everyone to spread sustainable improvements, I came away with real confidence that we can face the challenges ahead with assurance. There’s no place for arrogance or complacency – we face real and daily pressures – but we have a real basis of strength on which to build.

Paul Gray Twitter @PAG1962



NHSScot 15Craig White, Divisional Clinical Lead, The Quality Unit, Scottish Government Health and Social Care Directorates




Day two of the NHS Scotland event started with an opening address by Alex Neil, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing. He reminded us that providing health and social care that is truly person-centred is at the heart of ensuring Scotland’s health and social care services evolve to meet the challenges of the future. Being consistently person-centred in word and deed is a central guiding principle of our caring services. Mr Neil announced that a new system of listening to, and promoting people’s voices in our health and social care system will be developed.


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Within minutes of this announcement colleagues already started to welcome this on social media…

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..and then later a blog posting from the Chief Executive of the ALLIANCE:http://www.alliance-scotland.org.uk/viewpoint/2014/06/citizen-voice-at-the-heart-of-health-and-social-care/

NHSScot 14We now have a strong sense of what matters most to people – this person-centred focus and commitment has already seen us make tangible progress in recent years with continuous improvement of the quality of services, making our services more accountable, and ensuring that people’s experiences inform action at all levels of our health and social care system. We want people to be the lead partners in decision-making about their care at all levels – individually, locally and nationally. We want these ‘Always Events’ to become part of the way we do things in NHSScotland.


The Person-Centred Health and Care Collaborative, the People-Powered Health and Wellbeing Programme and Scottish Health Council’s work are already demonstrating what best practice looks like – the challenge is to make sure that this is experienced by every citizen of Scotland. Wednesday’s announcement will accelerate the progress required to make this a reality. We need to make sure that all of the wonderful ideas, plans and decisions are informed by what has worked well so far. This way we can create an effective and truly independent voice that will ask people what matters to them – then we will systematically support work to ensure people are at the heart of all we do.  Exciting times indeed, and a wonderful chance to shine a light on the bright spots already happening, spread this and scale up across the country.


Staff, of course, are people too – their experiences, ideas and concerns must also be listened and responded to. The Cabinet Secretary emphasised his commitment to this and also to ensuring that NHSScotland staff are supported to develop to the fullest extent of their potential. Although this applies to all NHS Scotland staff, Mr Neil announced specific actions that will focus on making NHS Scotland the most attractive system in the world for medical staff to train. NHS Education for Scotland will work in partnership with the Scottish Academy of Medical Royal Colleges and NHS Boards to make this a reality.  The announcement of the creation of a Health & Social Care Innovation Fund was a further sign of the Scottish Government’s commitment to support Scotland’s track record as a world leader in development, improvement and innovation. I know that staff will welcome this across the country – after all it is our staff that know best what the challenges are, where and how we might support innovation.

NHS Scotland is already a world leader in so many respects – the vision, leadership commitment, resources and clarity of direction that have been set out in Wednesday’s announcements; combined with the ideas, will and expertise among all of the delegates at the breakout sessions will be a powerful combination for further change, improvement and innovation.

We now have the strongest possible platform for Scotland’s to deliver integrated clinical and care services that are of the highest quality – person-centred, safe and effective for everyone, every time. The initiatives announced today will accelerate progress in the direction outlined in the 2020 vision, a vision of a health and social care system that:

  • Gives people a strong voice about their NHS, their health & care system
  • Supports all staff to fulfil their potential
  • Fosters innovation
  • Further supports our world leading patient safety programme
  • Is demonstrably and truly person-centred in everything

The vision and direction has been set, is clear and extremely compelling – we now all have a big opportunity to reach ‘escape velocity’ (see http://www.ihi.org/Engage/Initiatives/EscapeVelocity/Pages/default.aspx)

Here’s to next year’s NHS Scotland Event – or maybe ‘Health and Social Care Scotland Event’? (thanks to @GeoffHuggins, Acting Director of Health & Social Care Integration, Scottish Government for raising that idea).

Craig White

Email: craig.white@scotland.gsi.gov.uk Twitter: @craigwhitephd


2 thoughts on “NHS Scotland Event Day 2 by @PAG1962 & @craigwhitephd

  1. Pingback: NHS Scotland Event Day 2 by @PAG1962 & @craigwhitephd | weeklyblogclub

  2. Pingback: Communicating, Culture, Holidays and #nhsscot14 | weeklyblogclub

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