How we built a Geriatric Service in the ‘largest hospital in Europe’

137130702_e8290e0c4c_oCaroline Whitton is a Geriatrician working in NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde currently based in the Victoria Infirmary, Glasgow which is soon to be subsumed into the South Glasgow University Hospital. She has several educational roles which include Foundation Programme Director, Consortium Lead for NHS Education Scotland and Associate Director of Medical Education for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

For me, the adventure began when I was asked to deputise for my Clinical Director at a meeting to discuss junior doctor staffing of a new admissions unit. The meeting was hosted by the medical directorate, and I was the lone geriatric voice amongst a cast of many. From that meeting began a process that has, for the time being, taken over my professional life! Do I regret my initial impulse to go along? No – because it initiated a journey which has enabled me to be involved with the design of a completely new service. It has made it possible for me to influence the way in which I provide care to my patients and deliver training to my junior colleagues.

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Calling all Rising Stars!

Do you have a colleague who does  excellent work in geriatric medicine, and deserves to be recognised for it? Do you feel that you do outstanding work and would like to be recognised for it?shutterstock_130344965

Well, the BGS is launching an award today  which can help that to happen!

Nominations for the BGS Rising Star Award 2014 open today. We would like to make two Rising Star Awards each year:

  1. One for research contributions that have translated into, or are in the process of being translated into, improvements to the care of older people.
  2. One for a clinical quality project which improves the care of older people with frailty in your locality.

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Quality Mark for Elder Friendly Hospital Wards

Ensuring that we are delivering a high quality service is, or should be, the preoccupation of geriatricians and specialists in health care for older people. But how do we know if we are? As we consider the ongoing implications of the Francis Report, the BGS will be seeking to develop tools and services which help in this quest. There is much more to do but the BGS has assisted with the development of a Quality Mark for Elder Friendly hospital wards in collaboration with the Royal College of Psychiatrists and others. Dr Chris Dyer, the BGS representative on this project (with Peter Crome) shares more details.


At a single ward level, the Quality Mark for Elder Friendly Hospital Wards is a method that hospitals can use to raise standards of care for its most vulnerable group of patients. Indeed, as part of its response to the Francis Report the Royal College of Physicians has recommended use of the Quality Mark. Continue reading

Quality Matters

Dr Gill Turner is the recently appointed BGS Vice President for Clinical Quality and is a clinical consultant at  University Hospital Southampton

The BGS exists to promote quality health care for frail older people. So, why do we need a Vice President for Clinical Quality in the BGS?

I asked this very question when I applied for the post last summer – and although not yet fully answered, I now believe I understand some of what might be needed of this leadership role. I have spent the 4 months since my appointment considering how we need to develop our ‘quality’ agenda. This has, so far, involved much thought, hours of reading and many visits and conversations with experts from throughout the UK. Continue reading