A Fond Farewell

Well, East Lothian Health and Social Care Colleagues what an incredibly quick ten years this has been!

When I came to East Lothian as Chief Nurse in 2012, I certainly wasn’t thinking that my career would take me to into the position of Head of Operation / Chief Nurse Role and then to becoming Chief Officer in 2019!  Nor could I possibly have predicted all that we would achieve and face together over these 10 years.  

You don’t always get the opportunity to ponder for a moment to two, however, as I have done over the last few days, it is remarkable to reflect on all that the Partnership has achieved in such a short space in time. 

I’d like to take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks and gratitude to every single member of the team across the Partnership. For all that you have personally delivered and achieved; the challenges you have overcome; and the unwavering commitment you have made to deliver our services to the people of East Lothian.

There have been so many highlights; indeed, too many to give credit to them all in one go.   However, there are undoubtedly a few, which have come to mind over past few days;

Responding to a global pandemic! 
Never has health and social care been brought to such a precipice. 
Yet it is the resilience, the strength, the steadfast commitment, and ability to adapt, change and rethink our way of working that I will never forget.  The way we ensured that the care of others was always put first.  It was privilege to be part of Team East Lothian during this time.    

Developing New Approaches
We have developed a range of approaches to support people who could not take part in building-based Adult Day Services due to COVID-19.

We Opened Hardgate Court in Haddington – a new short-break service for adults with complex learning disabilities and specific health needs.

We implemented innovative Primary Care Services including:

  • Care When it Counts
  • MDT for urgent care
  • Self-referral pathways for mental health and MSK
  • AND we launched new Community Treatment and Care Services

We opened the East Lothian Community Hospital and we then expanded the number and range of services available helping to deliver one of our key ambitions of providing health services as close to home as possible for East Lothian residents. This included working with the Edinburgh Cancer Centre to enable some treatments to be provided at ELCH, saving some patients from travelling into Edinburgh

We continued to maintain our position as one of the top performing areas in Scotland for delayed discharges. We achieved this because of our key health and social care services working closely together to focus on supporting patient discharge. The new ICAT team has brought together different services to support this process.

Above all, there is one thing for sure.  I am incredibly grateful and humbled to have had the pleasure of working with an amazing team of individuals who are focused on meeting the needs of patients, residents, service-users, their families, and the public at large.

I know that Fiona Wilson will be warmly welcomed as your new Chief Officer by a fully integrated team; passionate, strong and committed to delivering the best health, best care and best value for our communities on behalf of the East Lothian Health & Social Care Partnership. 

Thank you for all you have done.  I wish you all well for the future.


Are you an unpaid carer working for ELC?

Many many ELC staff are carers, providing unpaid care by looking after
an ill, frail or disabled family member, friend or partner. They have to manage the difficult job of balancing work with their caring responsibilities, and this sometimes means that
they have very little time to take care of themselves and their needs.

In recognition of this, ELC’s Carer Positive Team has put together a Carers Hub on the council intranet to help carers find support they need at work and general sources of advice and support for their caring role. Just type ELC Carers Hub into the intranet search box..

New jobs supporting carers

Carers of East Lothian is delighted to let you know that they have now four new jobs on offer. These include a Volunteer & Training Coordinator maternity cover opportunity, a Parent Carer Support Worker role, and a small number of hours for a male Group Worker to support our Men Who Care group. Find out more at the links below

Coming soon – Dementia Friendly Meeting Centre in Musselburgh

This Dementia Friendly Week (30th May – 5th June), the ELHSCP, along with Dementia Friendly East Lothian​, Open Arms Carers and Musselburgh Area Community Partnership are delighted to confirm that funding has been secured to create a Dementia Meeting Centre within Musselburgh this Autumn – with the scope to expand to further satellite sites across East Lothian.

What is a Meeting Centre?

Meeting Centres help people with mild to moderate dementia to deal with the challenges around communication, finances, relationships, changes in behaviour and so on. But ultimately it’s a place where people can come together, enjoy each other’s company and activities together.

What makes a Meeting Centre is how people with dementia and carers feel when they are there – welcome, included, supported and listened to. Everyone is considered an equal partner; staff, volunteers and attendees wear name badges only – no titles, and it is the people living with dementia who suggest and decide on the activities that are made available for all to enjoy.

The video below, from Powys, Wales, features a poem written by Yvie George, titled “The Magic”. It is a reflection of her experiences as a Meeting Centre co-ordinator and provides a wonderful insight into what a Meeting Centre is like, and what will soon be available within East Lothian.

For more information about progress, consultations and ongoing project of creating a dedicated Meeting Centre visit: MUSSELBURGH MEETING CENTRE: RESTARTING THE CONVERSATION: FULL REPORT – Dementia Friendly (dfel.org.uk)

This week’s jobs

This week’s jobs include:

Care Support Workers – Community Based

Social Worker – Adult Services (Care Home Assessment & Review Team)

Social Worker – Adult Services (iCAT)

Senior Business Support Assistant – Community Care

Team Manager – Adult Social Work

House Domestic – Eskgreen Care Home (2 posts)

Locum Care Support Workers

Occupational Therapist – INTERNAL APPLICANTS ONLY

Justice Social Work Co-ordinator INTERNAL APPLICANTS ONLY

Senior Social Care Worker (Nights) – The Abbey Old Peoples Home

Social Care Assistant (Nights) – The Abbey Old Peoples Home


Last call for taking part in online consultation for IJB Strategic Plan 2022-25

Just a quick reminder that the Health and Social Care, Housing and Place engagement is closing soon. You have until 31 May to contribute your views to the engagement that will inform the IJB Strategic Plan, the East Lothian Council Local Housing Strategy and the Local Development Plan.

Please make sure you take the chance to say what you want to see for health and social care, housing and planning in East Lothian in the years to come.

You can find the survey and supporting information at Health & Social Care, Housing and Place Engagement 2022 – East Lothian Council – Citizen Space (eastlothianconsultations.co.uk)

Speak now…!

East Lothian Connect Group

Connect is a free service for women who have had some involvement with the justice system and who need support with challenges such as substance use, mental health difficulties or low self-esteem, or feel isolated or have experienced domestic abuse.

Read the very positive article about this service and our wonderful Justice Social Work Team in the East Lothian Courier here.

Please send any referrals to connect@eastlothian.gov.uk

PS – it’s not a new service (as it says in the article) but everything else there is accurate.

ELC Carer Positive – Carer’s Week Events for Council Staff

East Lothian Council is a Carer Positive (engaged) employer, which means that it:

  • has a good understanding of what the term ‘carer’ means and systems in place to help carers identify themselves as carers
  • recognises carers within HR policies and procedures
  • enables carers in its workforce to access practical workplace support and information about external support and services
  • communicates with carers about advice and support, raises awareness of carers’ issues for managers and staff, and offers training and support
  • helps carers to engage with other carers

Obviously, ELC wanted to something special to mark Carers Week 2022 (6-12 June) for all ELC staff who are unpaid carers.

There are still some events to come, but so far ELC is offering:

Tuesday 7th June 9.30am to 5.30pmMassage/Indian Head Massage at the Wellbeing Unit, Brewery Park , Haddington

Treat yourself to a head massage to reduce stress, relax and calm you mind and revitalize your brain and body. Book your free half-hour session now at hwl@eastlothian.gov.uk

Thursday 9th JuneVirtual Get-together by Teams12.30pm – 1.30pm

If you couldn’t make to a physical event, don’t despair. Get yourself a coffee and join carers across the council for a chat about all things carer! Email us at elccarers@eastlothian.gov.uk for your link.

We’re going to be on Radio Saltire!

As part of our Carers’ Week celebrations, ELC Carer Positive’s Gail Scott, Carers of East Lothian’s Jess Wade, and Young Carers in East Lothian’s Marie Prior will by on Radio Saltire’s Drive Time programme on Monday 6th June between 5pm and 7pm.

Jess and our very own Lorna Maclennan will be live on the Radio Saltire Breakfast Show on Thursday 9th June between 9am and 10am.

Not to be missed! If you’re not already a regular RS listener, find out more about how to tune in at https://www.radiosaltire.com

Consultation on Scottish Government Health and Social Care Strategy for Older People

From Sue Northrop, Dementia Friendly East Lothian

The Scottish Government’s ambition is to make Scotland the best place in the world to grow old. 

Their aim is that as people in Scotland get older they experience a great quality of life though safe, integrated, person centred health and social care. They are able to live actively, and drive the decisions about their health and wellbeing; with their human rights respected and their dignity protected.

Ageing is inevitable but ageing in poor health should not be. It is important for everyone in Scotland that we make sure our health and social care services are delivering for older people so that we can grow older healthier and live independently. Hearing the views of a wide range of people will therefore be an important part of developing this new strategy.The Scottish Government has been talking with a wide range of older people to get their views on their health and social care services, how these have been affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic and how services could improve, to better meet the needs of our ageing population. 

The importance of health and social care of older people has never been more urgent. A quarter of Scotland’s population will be 65 years and over by mid-2043, and pandemic has brought to light the inequalities that many older people face in being able to access a wide range of support services, allowing them to maintain their health and wellbeing and help prevent social isolation and frailty, which can lead to falls and ill health.

Come along to hear about the Scottish Government’s proposals and give your views on what you think older people in our community want and need. Please book your place.

• Louise Scott, Team Leader – Older People’s Health, Cancer and End of Life Care Unit, Healthcare Quality and Improvement, Scottish Government

• Sue Northrop, Dementia Friendly East Lothian

Booking linkhttps://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/health-social-care-for-older-people-have-your-say-tickets-338934140137

Consultation documentshttps://www.gov.scot/publications/consultation-health-social-care-strategy-older-people/documents/

Sue Northrop
Dementia Friendly East Lothian CIC
Tel: 07727 883 881
Email: sue@dfel.org.uk
Facebook: @DementiaFriendlyEastLothian
Website: https://dfel.org.uk