Dumfries & Galloway Health & Social Care


IJB Annual Accounts out for public consultation

The Unaudited Draft Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board (IJB) Annual Accounts for 2023/24 are now out for public consultation.

The IJB was established as a body corporate by order of the Scottish Ministers on 3 October 2015 as part of the establishment of the framework for the integration of Health and Social Care in Scotland under the Public Bodies (Joint Working) (Scotland) Act 2014.

The IJB has responsibility for the strategic planning and delivery of a defined range of Health and Adult Social Care services for the residents of Dumfries and Galloway.

The Draft Annual Accounts for 2023/24 opens with an overview of the key messages in relation to the objectives and strategy of Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board (the IJB) and its financial performance for the year ended 31st March 2024.

It also provides an indication of the risks and challenges which may impact upon the finances of the IJB in the future.

The Draft Annual Accounts for 2023/24 can be read by visiting

Any comments should be sent to the email address katy.kerr@nhs.scot by the end of August 16 2024.

Consultation events postponed due to Pre-Election Period

IN-PERSON drop-in events planned as part of the consultation on options for four cottage hospitals in the region will have to be postponed until after the newly-announced General Election.

Rules around the Pre-Election Period mean that gatherings such as those planned for Moffat on May 30 are not able to go ahead in the run-up to July 4th, and we are not permitted to promote the consultation during this time.

Director of Strategic Planning and Commissioning David Rowland said: “A consultation on behalf of Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board on options for cottage hospitals in Moffat, Thornhill, Kirkcudbright and Newton Stewart began last Friday May 17.

“A total of 15 in-person events taking place across the region had been scheduled and promoted, but rules around the period leading up to a General Election now mean that these cannot go ahead.

“None of these drop-in sessions will now take place before July 4. And while the consultation itself won’t be promoted when the ‘Pre-Election Period’ begins on Saturday May 25, all the materials including the online survey and downloadable forms will continue to remain available at the website https://dghscp.co.uk/rcrp-consultation/

“We will look to be able to pick up activity immediately after the General Election, and provide an update on consultation plans, hoping in the meantime that everyone will appreciate the requirement to comply with the rules which accompany periods in the run-up to elections.

“As of 22 May 2024, we had already received 99 completed surveys. We are extremely grateful to everyone who has contributed thus far and want to reassure them that the views they have offered will be shared with the IJB as part of our analysis of the feedback received during consultation.

“All completed surveys received during the Pre-Election Period and those submitted once we return to active consultation will also be included in that analysis.

“At that point consideration will be given to what extension may be required to the consultation period – so as to be able to accommodate rescheduled in-person drop-in events.”

Consultation taking place on four cottage hospitals

Consultation is about to take place on how to make best use of four of Dumfries and Galloway’s cottage hospitals – running from today until 18 August 2024.

Options have been developed through engagement with stakeholders for the cottage hospitals in Moffat, Thornhill, Kirkcudbright and Newton Stewart, and these are now the basis of the consultation.

Ultimately, the consultation outcomes will be brought to Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board, who will make any decisions on their future roles.

There are a variety of ways to take part – including in-person drop-in sessions taking place across the region, virtual consultation sessions, and a consultation document which can be completed online.

All materials including the online consultation document and the options appraisals report can now be found at the website https://dghscp.co.uk/rcrp-consultation/

It’s very important that everyone takes part and has their say, so please get involved.

In-person drop-in consultation events are as follows:

27 May 2024 Mon The Bridge, Dumfries 3-7pm
30 May 2024 Thu Moffat Town Hall 3-7pm
04 June 2024 Tue Castle Douglas Town Hall 3-7pm
05 June 2024 Wed Kirkcudbright Parish Church 3-7pm
10 June 2024 Mon Buccleuch Centre, Langholm 3-7pm
11 June 2024 Tue Lockerbie Town Hall 3.30-7.30pm
12 June 2024 Wed Thornhill Community Centre 3-7pm
17 June 2024 Mon Richard Greenhow Centre, Gretna 3-7pm
20 June 2024 Thu McMillan Hall, Newton Stewart 3-7pm
24 June 2024 Mon Victoria Hall, Annan 3.30-7.30pm
26 June 2024 Wed Millennium Centre, Stranraer 3-7pm
27 June 2024 Thu Sanquhar Community Centre 3-7pm
02 July 2024 Tue Dalbeattie Town Hall 3-7pm
04 July 2024 Thu St Ninian’s Hall, Isle of Whithorn 10am-1pm
04 July 2024 Thu New Town Hall, Whithorn 3-7pm
24 July 2024 Wed Online session 3-4pm
29 July 2024 Mon Online session 2-3pm

Consultation set to begin on role of four cottage hospitals

CONSULTATION is about to take place on how to make best use of four of the region’s cottage hospitals – running from tomorrow, 17 May, to 18 August.

Work has been taking place since the start of last year on Right Care, Right Place, engaging with stakeholders on models for delivery of treatment, care and support in the communities of Dumfries and Galloway.

Director of Strategic Planning and Transformation David Rowland said: “A huge amount of engagement activity has taken place with members of the public, staff, local GPs and elected members over the past 15 months. All of that work has been aimed at looking to ensure we have safe, sustainable models for meeting health and social care needs over the coming years.

“Our initial work saw us engage around bed-based intermediate care, before going on to consult on a flexible-model for this approach – which was agreed by Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board IJB) in September last year.

“However, we’ve also engaged around how to make best use of our cottage hospitals to meet the needs of local people and avoid unnecessary travel out of the area. In particular, we’ve engaged around the four locations where in-patient services are suspended – in Moffat, Thornhill, Kirkcudbright and Newton Stewart.

“Having engaged with a range of stakeholders, six options for each of these facilities have been developed and brought to the IJB who have approved that they go out for formal public consultation.

“An extensive programme of consultation is set to take place, with in-person drop-in events taking place right across the region as well as virtual consultation events and the opportunity to submit responses online.

“All of this goes live this Friday May 17 2024, running until August 18 2024, and with all the information available at this following website from Friday: https://dghscp.co.uk/rcrp-consultation/

“Anybody seeking more information can also call 07385413671.

“Once the consultation is complete, the responses will be brought to the IJB where decisions are expected to be taken.

“Ensuring that we have a well-planned, effective and sustainable model for delivering community-based health and social care in Dumfries and Galloway is crucial, and I would urge everyone to get involved and fully consider the options which have been developed.

“It’s very important that when the IJB meets to consider the outcomes later this year that the decisions it takes are fully informed by the perspectives and experiences of people who live in these communities and who work within health and social care. Please do take the time to get involved, and to have your say.

“Right Care, Right Place is a continuing programme, and although the current focus is on these four locations, beyond this immediate focus we’ll be continuing to develop approaches which best serve all the communities in our region.”

Details will be available from this Friday 17 May at the website https://dghscp.co.uk/rcrp-consultation/

DGHSCP Intrapreneurship Programme

DGHSCP Intrapreneurship Programme

Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Partnership (DGHSCP) are delighted to launch an exciting new programme that we believe can make a real difference for local people and how we provide care and support.

Applications are now open for the Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Partnership Intrapreneurship Programme, delivered in partnership with The Lens.

‘Enabling people to live well at home for longer’ is an ambition we all share and we are delighted to announce that DGHSCP is partnering with The Lens on a second Intrapreneurship Programme with the hopes to continue transformation across all areas of our health and social care system.

To learn more about the vision of the Programme, hear from David Rowland, Director of Strategic Planning & Transformation.

An investment fund of £50k was committed for the pilot Programme earlier in the year where five teams received investment to deliver their ideas after pitching at an Investment Day. To find out more about the day, watch the video here.

Launching today, the Programme will build intrapreneurial capability and capacity across DGHSCP and is a fantastic opportunity for professional and skills development. Those who participate will: develop business development and innovation skills, confidence, and leadership capabilities.

We know that it is often the people closest to the problem who have the best ideas. If you’ve got an idea that will enable people to live well at home for longer, DGHSCP would like to hear from you! Apply for the programme to have a chance at securing investment for your idea.

How to apply and who can get involved

Applications are now open and will close on the 21st November 2023.

You can find information on the application process, the application form and more details about the Programme here.

It is often the people closest to the problem have the best ideas. The Programme is open to all people who deliver health and social care and support, including unpaid Carers, third sector and other sector organisations.

Moving forward

I’m sure you all share our excitement as we take this significant step towards making our vision a reality.

This is a unique, exciting opportunity for you to make a real difference to the lives of the people of Dumfries and Galloway, and we look forward to hearing your ideas over the coming weeks.

If you have any questions at this stage, please do not hesitate to contact Jenny Coxon, Programme Manager at The Lens, who would be delighted to assist via hello@lensperspectives.org.uk

Actions agreed to address bed-based intermediate care needs

ACTIONS to address the region’s bed-based intermediate care needs were agreed at today’s meeting of Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board (IJB). 

Members agreed a flexible model for some beds in settings such as care homes, along with proposals to work with communities on plans for how facilities, such as cottage hospitals, will play a role in meeting health and social care needs in the future. 

IJB chairman Andy McFarlane said: “As we plan for the future, it is very clear that we face a massive challenge in meeting the increasingly complex needs of our population. 

“Continuing with the existing approach to bed-based care which sits between the two acute hospitals and people are able to manage independently in their own home is not going to work. 

“We know we have to adapt, and make strategic use of all our available resources in order to provide the treatment and care our population will require over the next 15 to 20 years. 

“I’m very pleased, therefore, that the report which came to the IJB today provides us with the best way forward, working together with our communities to develop an approach that best meets their needs.” 

The Right Care, Right Place report results from extensive community engagement earlier in the year which was then followed by 12 weeks of formal public consultation in the summer focused on four areas: 

  • The findings of the Right Care, Right Place: Intermediate Care engagement programme earlier in the year 

  • A description of how intermediate care is delivered, and the forecast of what will be required in future  
  • The proposal to introduce a flexible approach to intermediate care, to allow bed capacity to be allocated to different roles depending on demand 
  • Ideas on how intermediate care should be delivered in each local area, over three timescales – 1-2 years, 5 years and 10-15 years  

Director of Strategic Planning and Transformation David Rowland said: “We’re extremely grateful to everyone who took part in Right Care, Right Place. 

“During the consultation we heard a strong and clear message from people across the region that they want to see bed-based palliative and end of life care delivered within their local communities as a matter of priority and that we also need to make provision for local step-up and step-down care.   

“The approach agreed at IJB today means we can start implementing a flexible approach to bed usage.  

“We will now be working closely with local care home owners to support them to expand capacity to deliver bed-based intermediate care within local communities. 

“We will also now be looking to build on the conversations we have had throughout this year and will be sitting down with local communities to start planning how we make best use of our wider facilities to meet their health and social care needs in the medium and longer-term.  

“As always, we need to undertake this work with our communities with a mutual appreciation and recognition that we don’t have boundless resources, and that within Dumfries and Galloway, as nationally, we face major challenges in areas such as finance and recruiting to vacant posts.  

“As the Right Care, Right Place consultation set out, we believe that key to meeting this increasing and increasingly complex need is flexibility – both in the way our care provider organisations are structured and positioned to deliver care, and also in the way that our populations adapt to ensure that finite resources are employed as effectively as possible, and that we all work to support each other as members of our communities.” 

Two options for Wigtownshire maternity services to go out to consultation 

CONSULTATION on the future of Maternity Services in Wigtownshire is set to begin, after two options were presented to Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care IJB today. 

However, seeking to clarify expectations, the IJB notes that neither of the two options means birthing facilities will be available to all expectant mothers in the area – instead exploring birthing options for the low risk pregnant population in the Wigtownshire area. 

Chairman of the IJB Andy McFarlane said: “It’s well reported that hospital-based birthing services in Wigtownshire were halted in 2018 as a result of shortfalls in the number of qualified midwives required to ensure the safety of mothers and their babies. 

“As a Board, we have recognised strong feelings on this issue, particularly around the current travelling required for many births, and a local desire to establish a way forward.  

“Earlier this year, under two independent chairs and a national midwifery expert, engagement took place with people in the community and with staff in order to gain information to help shape potential options for the future of services. 

“Several options were developed by the independent chairs following engagement with stakeholders, and these went through a scoring process. 

“At the end of that scoring, two front-running options for births in the area were tied – the current arrangement which provides only for low-risk home births and a second option which would include pre-planned births at Galloway Community Hospital, again only for the same relatively small number of low-risk births.  

“While conscious that this was an independently chaired service review, it is important to recognise that this was a local service review which should include contributions and views from professional NHS staff. By doing so, it was noted that both option 1 and 2 scored the same on the day, with option 2 narrowly preferred by the independent chairs when the local professional scores were excluded.” 

The report by the independent chairs, NHS Ayrshire and Arran Medical Director Crawford McGuffie and NHS Ayrshire and Arran Executive Nurse Director Jennifer Wilson, came to the Transformation sub-committee of the IJB on August 10 2023. 

Mr McFarlane said: “The two options were discussed at that committee. Feeling there was a lack of a decisive outcome, and with no proposals or options having yet been taken out for the public to consider, a recommendation was agreed that two options be taken out for formal consultation. 

“This proposal was agreed at the meeting of the IJB on Wednesday 27 September, with a view that these possible options should go out to consultation so that the perspectives people offer in response can help inform and shape the ultimate decision making. 

“For the avoidance of doubt, and contrary to some reporting, neither of these options would represent a full birthing service in Wigtownshire. High risk births have always been advised to deliver in the Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary and this would remain the advice. 

“The second option is for pre-planned births in hospital which are assessed as being low-risk – and the last statistics for Wigtownshire showed that this was 23 per cent of all pregnancies in the area. 

“We’ll be looking to move to consultation as quickly as possible, and expecting this process to provide everyone with full information and understanding about both these options, and their implications – with details to be published in due course. 

“The IJB does not have a preferred outcome here, and we are keen that consultation takes place so that everyone within the community can help shape a model for childbirth that will serve Wigtownshire for years to come.” 

IJB committee considers report on Wigtownshire maternity services

A REPORT on the future of maternity services in Wigtownshire was considered on Thursday by a sub-committee of the region’s Integration Joint Board.

Head of Midwifery Laura Boyce said: “I’m very pleased that the report has been presented to this sub-committee of the IJB setting out options for the future of maternity services in Wigtownshire.

“I’d like to express my sincere thanks to the two independent chairs, NHS Ayrshire and Arran Medical Director Crawford McGuffie and NHS Ayrshire and Arran Executive Nurse Director Jennifer Wilson, and for the support provided by professional midwifery expert Angela Cunningham.”

The local service review of maternity services in Wigtownshire was launched on January 18 under independent expert chairs, seeking views from stakeholders to help inform approaches.

On Thursday, Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board’s (IJB) Transformation and Innovation/Futures Committee met with the purpose of considering and discussing the findings in the report and the next steps in moving towards a sustainable approach – to be taken on through the full IJB.

The report set out the work which had taken place to review maternity services and engage with the voice of our local communities, families who had experience of maternity services in Wigtownshire, as well as wider staff groups.

This review was undertaken in the context of the temporary suspension of low-risk, intrapartum maternity services at Galloway Community Hospital which came into effect in 2018 due to staffing pressures.

Option one represents the birthing service currently available in Wigtownshire. It would comprise continued care provision from Community Maternity Hub (Oak Tree Family Centre) and support for home births, but with no provision for intrapartum care within Galloway Community Hospital.

Option two would comprise the continued care delivery from Community Maternity Hub (Oak Tree Family Centre), with the addition of a planned, on call birthing option for low risk births from Clenoch Birth Centre within Galloway Community Hospital.

Under either option, there would be no midwives routinely based at Galloway Community Hospital for wider aspects of care.

Both options achieved the same score of 78 in the scoring process, inclusive of NHS Dumfries and Galloway professional leads who participated in the process. Option two was the preferred option of the professional experts independent to NHS Dumfries and Galloway, with a score of 80.

The report also noted the resource implications for resuming births on a planned, low-risk basis at the Clenoch Birth Centre, at an associated cost of about £103,000.

Contrary to some media reporting, the report was very clear that option 2 would only be for planned, low-risk labour and birth and would not be suitable for all births in the Wigtownshire area.

In the most recent data for Wigtownshire, 23% of all pregnancies were assessed as low-risk. Risk assessment throughout pregnancy and birth is undertaken following nationally recognised standards.

There is a need to highlight that, other than for location, the service provided under the option for planned, low-risk births in the Clenoch Birth Centre would be the same as the regionwide home birth service currently provided for expectant mothers in Wigtownshire.

On Thursday, the Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board’s (IJB) Transformation and Innovation/Futures Committee decided to recommend to the full IJB meeting of September 27 that the two options are taken out to public consultation.