My December Diary

Just thought I’d do a quick diary round-up now as people start getting ready for the festive season.

The run up to Christmas has been as hectic as ever. We have a visit from NHS Lothian Chief Executive Tim Davison just over a week ago during which we updated him on ELHSCP’s progress and gave him a chance to have a look around the East Lothian Community Hospital. We also said goodbye to East Lothian Council’s Chief Executive Angela Leitch, who has left to take up a new role as Chief Executive of Public Health Scotland. Alex McCrorie is Interim Chief Executive and the Chief Executive will be announced shortly.

We also held the last IJB meeting of the year, at which Judith Tait (in her Chief Social Work Officer role) gave us her annual report. The report gives a full over-view of the delivery of social work services in East Lothian, including fostering, child protection, adult protection, adult social care and criminal justice social work. It also provides commentary and analysis of the Health and Social Care Partnership. Judith said that in a difficult period for social work nationally, we are holding our own. She said that our staff continue to work hard to help people make and sustain positive changes in their lives.  She was clear that there would be challenges ahead but was confident that East Lothian Health and Social Partnership was addressing these in our strategic plan.

I think that’s a really positive message and covers not just social work but integrated health and social care. Times are tough but through a combination of innovative approaches and integrated working, we are using our resources and experience wisely to help the growing number of people who use our services to achieve good outcomes.

It has been a big year for us in so many areas – the implementation of the Carers Strategy, achievements acknowledged in the Care Inspectorate’s national thematic review of Self-Directed Support, the new East Lothian Community Hospital, Wellwynd Hub, the success of the Community Review Team, START and our new mental-health/substance misuse drop in in Musselburgh.  Those are just a few of our achievements – things are really beginning to come together and this is very much down to all of you. Your willingness to embrace integrated working and share ideas and good practice has led to much of our success this year. The momentum is building so let’s keep that going now.

So it just remains for me to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  To those of you who are preparing for a break, happy holidays – rest, recuperate and enjoy! To those of you working over Christmas and New Year, a really big thank you. I know there are many people relying on you to whose days you will make a big difference. And enjoy your Christmas when it comes.

Thank you for everything this year and all the very best to you and yours this Festive Season.

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