Dumfries & Galloway Health & Social Care

D&G Health & Social Care

Call out for photos

Call out for photos


Dumfries and Galloway NHS Board are calling out to their staff and to the community to ask them to share with them their photos of the region to be used in some of their upcoming promotional activity, including recruitment campaigns.

The current stock of photos needs to be updated so as to reflect the diverse culture, activities, housing, and work life of our beautiful region. The NHS wants to ensure when they go to recruitment events to promote working in our region that they can appeal to a wide ranging audience and really showcase what it has to offer.





Your photo will need to fall into one of the following categories and below are some ideas as to what that could be


The NHS are looking for some pictures showcasing some of the great places there are to work in within the organisation across the region.  Do you have pictures from team away days or general life in your role?  Perhaps you work at DGRI and there is a particular room which has an amazing view or you want to share with others the work area or a place where you like to go and chill out.


Perhaps you live in an area that has outstanding scenery such as beaches, countryside or it may be you think you live in or know of a really pretty house or street that you feel would help promote the area.


Please have loads of fun with this category. We are looking for a range of photos to appeal to families and single professionals. It could be children running on one of the beautiful beaches or shots from a family day out at a local attraction. You may have photos from one of the local food, drink, music or book festivals that we have locally. It may be that you have some photos relating to sports or outdoor pursuits such as bicycle trails or running groups that would appeal to people out of the area.


Entry details

Please send to dgcommunications@nhs.net

Including in the email, please add the following:

  • Name*
  • Staff group: i.e. nurse, administrator. If not staff please state “Member of the public”
  • Category: (work, live or play)
  • Where the photo was taken: i.e. Portpatrick, Sandyhills Beach

Entry requirements and terms

Photos should be of good quality and where they are of direct shots of people or faces are recognisable you should have had the permission from the individuals in the photos.

Any work related photos should not include any confidential information or breach any privacy or dignity policy.

By submitting your photo you are giving the NHS your permission to use your photo in some of its marketing campaigns.

*The NHS will where possible identify the name of the person who took the photo and staff group unless you would prefer not to be identified, If so, please in Name sign ‘anonymous’.

The NHS may not be able to use all photos if they have inappropriate content

200 health and social care staff sing about ‘working together’

200 health and social care staff sing about ‘working together’


A VIDEO which sees 200 health and social care staff and volunteers from across Dumfries and Galloway sing about ‘working together’ is quickly gaining popularity across the Internet.

Nearly 32,000 people have so far watched a video uploaded last Wednesday which sees everyone from a GP to the General Manager of ICT, a social work team to care home staff help promote the work which takes place across Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Partnership.

A spokesman for the Partnership, which has responsibility for the vast bulk of health and adult social care services, said: “There have been really significant changes in the structure of Scottish health and social care over the last few years, but we were aware that people might not realise just how integrated things have become under the Health and Social Care Partnerships.

“We thought a music video showcasing just some of the vast range of work taking place within our region might help to illustrate the scale of that integration, and also help strengthen that bond between all staff and volunteers.

“We licensed the rights to the song ‘Let’s Work Together’, as popularised in the 60s by Canned Heat, and set about creating the video entirely in-house – utilising the skills of the men and women who work and volunteer within the Partnership.

“The response to the idea itself was overwhelming, and we simply weren’t able to feature everyone in the video. However, everyone who gave up just a couple of minutes from their busy days to take part had a great time, and we’re looking to continue filming over coming months to create different versions, and with a different focus.

“We owe thanks to so many people, including local radio DJ Lee Medd who very kindly provided a voiceover at the start of the video – as our central character sets off to work within the Partnership.

“Hopefully together we’ve helped to spread the message about ‘working together’, and demonstrated that Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Partnership is a great place to live, work and play.”

Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary Staff Nurse Christine Potts helps introduce the video, seen cycling to work at the new £212 million hospital which was officially opened by HRH The Princess Royal in July 2018.

Christine said: “I initially responded to say that my hospital ward, D7, would be keen to feature – and they did a fantastic job.

“But as a result of that, I found myself being asked to take on the role of helping to introduce the video’s whistle-stop tour around some of the work taking place across Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Partnership on any given day.

“I’d never done anything like this before, but I have to say it was a huge amount of fun. It’s really rewarding that so many people now have a better understanding of all the services which take place within the Partnership, and they can see just how great a place the region is to come and work in. As the video shows, we’re a very friendly bunch.”

Julie White is Chief Officer for Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Partnership, as well as Chief Operating Officer for NHS Dumfries and Galloway.

Speaking about the video, Julie said: “We’re really pleased to be able to share this video showcasing the amazing activity which takes place on a daily basis right across the Partnership, which is made up of the NHS, the local authority, the Third Sector and Independent Sector.

“We’re incredibly grateful to our staff and volunteers who are dedicated to taking forward our aims of improving the health and wellbeing of our communities and delivering excellent health and social care to those requiring support.

“We’d also welcome anyone who has an interest in working within the Partnership to get in touch, and find out about the many excellent opportunities which exist within Dumfries and Galloway.”

The video can be viewed on Facebook at https://tinyurl.com/y5hca2qh

It has now also just been newly uploaded in 4K on YouTube, and can be viewed at https://youtu.be/8JViQnB3Law




Dumfries and Galloway Staff Nurse Christine Potts helps to introduce the video, as she is seen cycling to work at the new Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary

Staff at Newton Stewart Cottage Hospital make a lively contribution, having fun shooting their sequence in the video

Social Work staff take turns to sing about the virtues of ‘working together’

Dumfries GP Dr Debbie Swalwell

The team at Ecclefechan Day Centre

Some of the dental staff at South West Smile Care Centre

The staff at Annandale Bed and Bath Service in Lockerbie


Established Carer Positive Status


Established Carer Positive status awarded to health board as employer


AN AWARD has been presented to NHS Dumfries and Galloway – recognising it as an employer which supports Carers in the workplace.

Established Carer Positive status was presented during a visit to Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary by Simon Hodgson from Carers Scotland on June 13 as part of Carers Week.

Workforce Director Caroline Cooksey took receipt of the award, and said: “It was with huge pride that we received an award which officially recognises the action NHS Dumfries and Galloway has taken as an employer to ensure that support is provided to Carers who work within the organisation.

“Being a Carer is a major responsibility, and our local health and social care structure depends on the incredibly important role which they play.

“It is only right that we, as employers, ensure that we provide every support we can as they carry out daily work which sits in addition to their actions as Carers in Dumfries and Galloway.”

Carer Positive status is awarded to employers in Scotland who have a working environment where Carers are valued and supported.

This might be through flexible working policies or with simple practical measures which can make a big difference to Carers.

This award confirms that NHS Dumfries and Galloway is committed to working with Carers to provide the flexibility they need.

For many Carers, work can often represent a lifeline, not only financially, but in providing a life outside of caring.

Being able to access and continue working enables Carers to be in a better position to provide care for a relative, friend or neighbour who cannot live independently without the Carers help.

To find out more about Carer Positive, please visit www.carerpositive.org  or contact Simon Hodgson at simon.hodgson@carersscotland.org / Sue McLintock at sue.mclintock@carerscotland.org  or call 0141 445 3070.

Pictured: Simon Hodgson from Carers Scotland presents the Established Carer Positive status award to Caroline Cooksey, during Carers Week at the Information Station in the atrium at Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary. Pictured, left to right: Non Executive Director & Carer Positive Representative Lesley Bryce, Carers Scotland Director Simon Hodgson, Dumfries and Galloway Carers Strategy Commissioning Officer Larel Currie, NHS Dumfries and Galloway Workforce Director Larel Currie, Caroline Mroczkowski from NHS Dumfries and Galloway and HR Manager – Head of Service Pamela Jamieson


Video sees local man promote benefits of Anticipatory Care Plan

AN APPROACH which will help everyone shape their future health care is the focus of a new video produced in Dumfries and Galloway.

The Anticipatory Care Plan is a national initiative which encourages everyone to have conversations with their families and their healthcare providers about what type of care they want to receive.

This person-centred approach results in a plan which is a record of those conversations, setting out needs and wishes as well as the health outcomes each individual wants to achieve.

Dennis Arnold, 73, of Brydekirk features in the new video speaking about how important the Anticipatory Care Plan (ACP) has been for him.

Mr Arnold said: “To be honest, when I first saw the Anticipatory Care Plan I thought, ‘Oh no, not another’.

“It seems to me rather too often that you’re faced with these things, and they’re a bit daunting in some respects because they touch on subjects that you’re not really very comfortable talking about and perhaps you don’t want to think about.

“But after a while I looked at it again and again and I came to the conclusion that it’s actually a very positive document.

“It was very well written in the sense that it explained what it wanted you to do, it gave a real sense of being about you and how you can be supported in your care now and in the future, and your health needs now and in the future.

“Overall I think the plan is a very positive one. I think the greatest thing about it is that you are actually in control, and you can make decisions about your future and you may be able to make decisions that you couldn’t at a later stage because you may not really be well enough to make those decisions.”

Mr Arnold is about to go into hospital for surgery, and says he now understands the importance of bringing the completed plan with him in his pre-assessment appointment and when he has the surgery.

He also says it means it keeps his GP up to date with where he is in his treatment, and allows them to respond to his immediate needs.

Mr Arnold added: “I’m already using it practically.”

Annan GP Dr Fiona O’Brien also stresses how importance of the whole approach.

Dr O’Brien said: “The Anticipatory Care Plan explores what’s important to you, helps you to write down who and what is important, who cares for you, who you want to care for you, and where your long-term conditions are taking you.”

The Anticipatory Care Plan is available in a physical format from health professionals including local GP practices.

It can be downloaded from the website https://ihub.scot/project-toolkits/anticipatory-care-planning-toolkit/anticipatory-care-planning-toolkit/documents/and is also available as an app from Google Play and the Apple App store.

Written in plain English, the plan takes someone through the process of answering straightforward questions aimed at clearly setting out their current health needs and what they want in the future.

The ACP is backed across the range of health and social care organisations, including the Scottish Ambulance Service.

Derek Reive from the service said:  “We need to have conversations early and support completion of the Anticipatory Care Plan, and encourage people to share the plan with their GP practice.

“It will help improve communications between services such as paramedics, Out of Hours, NHS 24 and other health and social care practitioners.”

And care and support services such as Rainbow Services are also endorsing the plan and encouraging people to complete their own.

George Dickson said: “Anticipatory Care Plans are simply about planning for the future, and encouraging people to think ahead about their own care.

“This allows practitioners to meet with people and their families to discuss things that are really important to the person. It’s a very person-centred thing.”

Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Partnership will be working to encourage people of all ages and all health support needs to complete their own Anticipatory Care Plan, and help set out their future needs.

A separate video has been produced featuring new chair of the Integration Joint Board Councillor Andy Ferguson who voices the importance of the document.

Councillor Ferguson said: “It’s a way to help me understand my own health and allows me to make choices after having spoken to the people who really matter, and who can affect how my health will be dealt with.

“It puts me in more control of any changes that might happen in the future.”

The new national Anticipatory Care Plan can be downloaded from the website https://ihub.scot/project-toolkits/anticipatory-care-planning-toolkit/anticipatory-care-planning-toolkit/documents/ and also obtained as an app from Google Play or the Apple App store.

A printed copy of the plan can be obtained from local health centres including GP surgeries.

To view the video featuring Brydekirk man Dennis Arnold, visit https://youtu.be/412L5i3WUCs

To see the video featuring IJB chairman Councillor Andy Ferguson, visit https://youtu.be/t-26NGQhQys

Meetings scheduled on Lockerbie/Lochmaben GP practice status

AN UPDATE is to be provided on work to support a GP practice in Lockerbie – following moves last month intended to help sustain services.

Two public meetings have been scheduled in Lockerbie and Lochmaben on the evening of Wednesday May 22.

This is intended as a further opportunity to discuss developments following action in February which saw approximately 700 of the 5500 patients at Lockerbie Medical Practice informed of a transfer to Lochmaben Medical Group.

Dr Kenneth Donaldson is Medical Director, and he said: “At that time we had to act quickly in order to ensure we could support GP services in Lockerbie.

“A month on from the actual patient move, we want to ensure people are kept informed about the actions being taken, and that they have an opportunity to tell us how they see the situation and to raise any issues.”

In February, letters went out to those patients registered at Lockerbie who lived within an area adjacent to Lochmaben to inform them of a transfer of service to Lochmaben Medical Group.

It was stated that a further 250 patients who live outside the Lockerbie practice area would be contacted with help to access GP provision in a practice that serves their area. These letters will be issued shortly.

Dr Donaldson said: “We also stated in February that a letter would go out to other Lockerbie registered patients living within the Lochmaben practice area, highlighting the option to move their registration to Lochmaben Medical Group if they wish.

“A number of people at the last public meeting volunteered an interest in transferring to Lochmaben. As promised, letters will go out shortly to those who are eligible to make the switch, and they will then have that opportunity should they wish to do so.

“It is still early days, but we are encouraged that staff at Lockerbie Medical Practice are beginning to see a positive impact from this move of patients.

“A new Practice Nurse and a new Advanced Practitioner are now set to begin working at the Lockerbie practice in the next few weeks. Efforts are continuing to recruit long-term GP cover and reduce the reliance on locum support, but we are fortunate that there are now a number of locum GPs providing regular support to the practice.

“We’re still far from being in an ideal position of being able to provide the service in Lockerbie that we would want to be providing, but as work continues we are positive about getting to that destination.

“Meanwhile, staff at Lochmaben Medical Group say they have comfortably absorbed the additional patients after reconfiguring their appointment system, but we continue to liaise closely with the practice to ensure it and the surrounding infrastructure is managing okay.”

The meeting in Lockerbie takes place at 6.30 pm in King’s Arms Hotel on Wednesday May 22, while the meeting in Loch

maben the same evening takes place at 8 pm at King’s Arms Hotel.

Virtual Support Group launched for people living with chronic pain

Pain Association Scotland in Association with DGHSCP is piloting a Virtual Support Group for people in Dumfries and Galloway living with chronic pain.

The virtual support group uses technology similar to Skype, Google Hangout or Facetime, to link people with a Pain Association Trainer to participate in an online group exploring pain self-management.

The virtual support group is for people living with chronic pain who are unable to attend the monthly self-management groups in Dumfries and Stranraer, with afternoon and evening sessions taking place each month.

Cupar first to make laboratory visit in Harvey’s Gang initiative

A CHANCE to see behind the scenes at a hospital laboratory has been offered to a young boy from the region.


For the very first time, NHS Dumfries and Galloway has partnered with national charity Harvey’s Gang which offers children a chance to see behind the scenes of medical laboratories.


And on April 8 2019, six-year-old Cupar Rush from Castle Douglas was given a special tour of the Blood Sciences laboratory at Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary in Dumfries which helped diagnose his medical condition acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, or ALL.


Specialist Biomedical Scientist Gayle Johnstone said: “We were really thrilled to welcome six-year-old Cupar Rush and his eight-year-old sister Ailsa as the first visitors into our laboratory thanks to Harvey’s Gang.


“Cupar has spent time in DGRI in the past, and had a good understanding of the work which takes place in a hospital.


“However, you don’t really get to see what happens when samples are taken for testing, so this initiative is an excellent way to demystify that process and introduce all the people busy working away behind-the-scenes to help people who aren’t well.”


Cupar finished his treatment for ALL in October, and his visit to the laboratory provided a chance to meet Specialist Biomedical Scientist Keith Middlemiss who was part of the team in the lab that actually diagnosed Cupar’s condition. Specialist Biomedical Scientist Sue Jeffrey also assisted in the tour. The paediatric lead for Harvey’s gang is Paediatric Ward Staff Nurse Sharron McGarva who also attended the tour.


For the tour, Cupar and Ailsa were presented with special white lab coats sponsored by the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS). Cupar didn’t want to wear his coat at first, but when he saw his sister wearing it he quickly put it on.


Accompanied by parents Paul and Tracy, the youngsters got to play ‘I Spy’ around the lab, got to send Harvey the penguin – named by Cupar –  in the pod to paediatrics and wait for a reply, look down the microscope at blood films and draw what they saw, try a colour reaction experiment and handle real blood and platelet bags.


And the day was rounded off by a presentation of certificates, which saw Cupar and Ailsa officially become honorary Biomedical Scientists.

Both Cupar and Ailsa received a goodie bag sponsored by Ortho Clinical Diagnostics, with items including a lanyard, coloured pencils, red leather journal, large red blood cell and many activities to do at home, compiled by Gayle.

Harvey’s Gang was set up by Worthing Hospital’s Chief Biomedical Scientist Malcolm Robinson in memory of a little boy called Harvey Buster Baldwin. The children’s ward contacted Malcolm as Harvey (7), who had leukaemia, wanted to know where his blood samples went and what happened to them.

Malcolm arranged for Harvey to come to the pathology labs for a tour and answer all his questions. Harvey loved the tour and the visit was so successful that in his memory ‘Harvey’s Gang’ was set up. Malcolm has won many awards and received recognition for his work with Harvey’s Gang. Due to his dedication, it has expanded to over 47 sites across the globe – with DGRI now proudly being one of them.


Gayle Johnstone said: “It was such a fun time for Cupar and Ailsa, and our teams really enjoyed meeting them, answering their questions and explaining our work.


“We’re delighted that our first laboratory visit through the Harvey’s Gang charity was such a success, and we’re already looking forward to the next one – which will take place in May.”


The first DGRI Harvey’s gang tour can be seen on the Harvey’s gang blog.






Charter sets out future for Learning Disability services

A COMMITMENT has been made to join Adults with a Learning Disability in jointly developing approaches to support and services.

Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Partnership (DGHSCP) is responsible for the vast majority of health and social care services in the region, and has now formally signed the Charter for Involvement.

The Charter has been written by the National Involvement Network (NIN), and sets out in their own words how supported people with a learning disability want to be involved in the support that they get, the organisations that provide their services and with the wider community.

Glen Graham is the Strategic Planning and Commissioning Manager (Learning Disability) for DGHSCP and he said: “We’re very serious about our commitment to work in partnership with Adults with a Learning Disability, and so we’re delighted to now have signed a Charter which helps cement that pledge.”

Since September 2017 the Partnership has been carrying out a scoping exercise of existing services and support provided to Adults with a Learning Disability living in Dumfries and Galloway, acting on the directions of the IJB. 

Glen said: “As part of this work, the views and experiences of people with a learning disability, their families, carers and people who provide services have contributed to an understanding of existing resources.

“They have also served an important role in highlighting the challenges we currently face and are likely to face going forward.

“To build on this work the involvement of people with a Learning Disability, their families, carers and service providers is going to be key to the development of a strategy for Learning Disability.  

“The principles contained within the Charter for Involvement reflect outcomes that the Health and Social Care Partnership is working to achieve for people with a learning disability, their Carers and families. They are also directly linked to the objectives of the national Keys to Life Strategy.”

The Integration Joint Board sets the direction for health and social care services in the region, and newly-appointed Chair and Vice Chair Councillor Andy Ferguson and Penny Halliday were joined by representatives of the NIN for the official charter signing – including members of the local Powerful Voices Service User Group and a representative of ARC Scotland.

Councillor Ferguson said: “The Charter is a very significant document, and I’m proud that one of my first acts as the new Chair of the IJB was to sign our commitment to adopt the approach it sets out.

“A lot of good work has already taken place in Dumfries and Galloway with Adults with a Learning Disability, but there is still a lot that needs to be done around developing services and support.

“This document is a crucial part of the jigsaw – and will make an integral contribution towards the current work to develop a joint Learning Disability strategy for the region.”