Living and Working as a geriatrician in Wales

Dr Anthony James is a Consultant Physician at Princess of Wales Hospital. 

Why train, work and live in Wales and why do Geriatric medicine here? It isn’t an easy decision to choose a specialty or move to a different part of the country. Wales is often thought of for its castles, song, rugby, dragons and heavy industry in the way of Coal and steel.

The national health services was established on the 5th July 1948 by Aneurin Bevan, a Welsh man, and today the National Health Service is Wales’ largest Employer.  In recent years the NHS in Wales policy has deviated from England’s version guided by the Wales Assembly Government (WAG) based in Cardiff. Continue reading

Start With Why

Dr Sean Ninan is a registrar in Geriatric and General (Internal) Medicine in the Yorkshire Deanery. He tweets at @sean9n and @gerisreg shutterstock_114405178

Here Sean writes on his blogs, Senior Moments, about why he has chosen to specialise in geriatric medicine, and how he wants to inspire junior doctors as they begin their rotation in his department.

Start With Why.

Welcome to the older people’s ward. My name is Dr Sean Ninan.

I hope you enjoy your time on the ward. You will certainly learn lots. By the end of your time here you will see patients with classic geriatric syndromes, sepsis, malignancy, acute kidney injury, neurological disorders and much more. We will teach you to become very good at assessing patients with delirium, falls, blackouts, immobility, Parkinson’s disease, dementia as well as general medicine topics like sepsis, acute kidney injury and acute coronary syndromes. You will learn what frailty really means and what it means to perform comprehensive geriatric assessment. I expect you to learn about these topics because you will be looking after patients with these problems, but wherever possible, we will try to tailor learning to your chosen career, whether that is general medicine or general practice. If you are going to be a surgeon, obstetrician or something else, then bear with us! It is still important that you learn about geriatric medicine in order to provide a good quality of service, and hopefully you will still enjoy it, and take some of what you have learned into your future career. I also hope that we can convince some of you along the way to join us in geriatric medicine in the future.

Continue reading

Physician Associates in Geriatric medicine

Dr Natalie Powell is a Consultant in Acute and Geriatric Medicine at Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust. She tweets at @NPowellNataliephysician assistants

Looking back I wonder how I ever coped without our Physician Associates (PAs).  Still a relatively new role in the NHS, PAs have been working in the United States for over 40 years.  They work to the medical model and are holistic practitioners with a variety of skills ideally suited to caring for older people. They are able to provide continuity for patient care on the wards; a familiar face for patients, relatives and ward staff to get to know.  They go that extra mile to make sure older people get the care and attention they deserve. Continue reading

Geriatric Medicine and the burden of common sense.

Prof Kenneth Rockwood is Director of Geriatric Medicine Research at Dalhousie University, Canada and serves on the International Advisory Panel of Age and Ageing journal. shutterstock_145815530

I’ve been teaching geriatric medicine for about 25 years. During that time, my attitude towards the common sense of geriatric medicine has changed. At first, I saw it as a great blessing: it was easy to let people know what they needed to do. Then I began to see it as a challenge: an audience could sit through a diverting 40 minutes, but in the end not be persuaded that they have learned anything. “Nothing to that – it’s all common sense”. Now I see the common sense of what we do as a foe, and one that we should conquer. Continue reading

Precious GEMSS – Future jewels in the Crown of Geriatric Medicine?

A group of medical students at the University of Aberdeen have formed what is believed to be Europe’s first undergraduate medical society for the promotion of geriatric medicine and quality care for older people.GEMMS logo

The Geriatric Medicine Student Society (GEMSS) is a forum for students with a special interest in care of the elderly and its main aims are to:

  • Provide members with further educational opportunities in the care of older people
  • Promote both geriatric medicine as a career and the improvement of standards of care of older people across all medical specialties
  • Offer opportunities to interact and learn from older people in a number of community and healthcare settings.
  • Promote research about efficacy of services and treatments available for older people

Continue reading

Generation Geriatrician?

Felicity Jones is a final year medical student at King’s College London and current Junior Members Representative for the BGS: representing Junior Doctors and Medical Students on the Trainees Council. She tweets personally at @faejones, and for BGS at @younggeris.GG

Caring for an ageing population is a major challenge of our time. Across the world, societies are ageing, with wide-ranging impacts. Many overlook the huge contributions the over-65s make to our labour workforce, running the third sector, and as carers for friends and relatives. It’s easy for these contributions to be ignored in a narrative which at a societal level tends to focus the challenges of providing a comprehensive health and social care to an ever-increasing proportion of our society.    Continue reading

Geriatrics for Juniors

The Association for Elderly Medicine Education (AEME) recently organised a conference in Newcastle to encourage interest amongst junior doctors in the speciality of geriatric medicine. AEME tweets at @ElderlyMedEd

The AEME team (from left to right: James Fisher, Kelly Hunt and Mark Garside)

The AEME team (from left to right: James Fisher, Kelly Hunt and Mark Garside)

AEME is a non-profit organisation formed in November 2012 by a small group of geriatric medicine trainees in the Northeast of England, all of whom have a common interest in medical education and a passion for their speciality.

AEME organise and support activities related to the continued professional development and education of current and future healthcare professionals working in elderly medicine. One of AEME’s key aims is to promote interest in geriatric medicine and to encourage health care professionals to explore a career in the specialty. AEME’s ultimate goal is to improve the standard of care provided to elderly patients. Continue reading

Tomorrow’s Geriatricians…Coming to A Team Near You

Danielle Ní Chróinín is a Specialist Registrar in Geriatric Medicine and an enthusiastic educator shutterstock_39735628

Would you be a geriatrician? It’s not a hard question for some of us to answer. Challenging, rewarding, dynamic; every day brings new stories, new lessons, new opportunities to share in the life of each older person who comes under your care. But for students on the path to becoming doctors, geriatric medicine may not be a preferred career choice. Yet these very students are potentially the colleagues we’ll have tomorrow. So who may want to be a geriatrician, and why?

In a survey completed by almost 300 senior Dublin medical students over a 2-year period, we sought to determine their career preferences, including their interest in geriatric medicine, and the factors influencing these decisions. As a potential influencing factor, we explored the impact of a novel six-week Medicine in the Community module, delivered in partnership by Medicine for the Elderly and General Practice, on speciality selection. Continue reading