Saturday, 13 August 2016

Former Gillespies pupil wins cycling gold

Callum Skinner has been dubbed 'the next Chris Hoy'.    He has just won the men's team sprint gold in Rio.

Get the full story here.

13.8.16:  More here.

Friday, 12 August 2016

More data On GP capacity - this time city wide

Recently I have posted several times about local GP capacity - see here and here and here.

As I know some are very interested/concerned about the issue I include below in full a recent briefing which has been supplied to me by the SW Locality Manager:
"GP capacity and primary care pressures

Current situation

There have been concerns expressed nationally about the sustainability of primary care / GP provision for several years.
. . . click title for full post . . . 

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Local based swimmer Dan Wallace gets Olympic Silver

Warrender trained Dan Wallace was part of the British 4 x 200 relay team which took a silver medal this week.  Details here.

Bernard Terrace Surgery update

In July I noted concerns about changes - and the possible closure of the GP Surgery in Bernard Terrace.  This was my last post.  The following reply has been received from Alex McMahon, one of the Execurive Directors of NHS Lothian:
"I would like to reassure you that there are no plans to close Southside Surgery.
Following the retirement of two of the partners, the practice has experienced difficulties in recruitment.  The recruitment and retention of GPs is a nationwide issue which affects every practice and Health Board, and NHS Lothian is working with Scottish Government and our GP colleagues to look at ways of addressing this.
We have agreed with the Southside Surgery that the practice and existing staff willcome under direct NHS management, through the Edinburgh Health and Social Care Partnership team, by the end of this year under a Section 2C contract.  Direct management provides the opportunity to restructure practice teams and to explore new service delivery approaches.  This is being carefully planned to ensure that patients continue to receive safe, effective and timely care.
A great deal of work is being done to secure premises well ahead of gthe expected deadline and we are confident this will be achieved. A number of locations are currently being considered and the Edinburgh Health and Social Care Partnerships and NHS Lothian, will be supporting the practice team to help reassure patients during this period of uncertainty.
Primary Care provision is a key priority of NHS Lothian and our four Health and Social Care Partnerships.  It is an issue that all GP practices in the region are aware of and are working hard to approve.  We are currently carrying out a major review of demand, capacity and access in primary care to enhance facilities and services for patients for the years ahead." 

Thursday, 4 August 2016

East Preston Street cabling works

BT cabling works are scheduled for Monday 8th August and Friday 12th August in East Preston Street and South Oxford Street.  It will mean some parking restrictions while the work is undertaken. Look out for the bollards and signs.

Thursday, 28 July 2016

RBS say Edinburgh is most expensive student city in UK

Their Student Living Index surveyed 2500 students across the UK and came up with the result which you can find at this link..

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Local response to loss of surgery

Last week I reported (here and here) on how the shortage of GP facilities and resources for residents in Edinburgh is becoming acute - and the possible closure of the Southside Surgery in Bernard Terrace.

I have received a copy of a response to the Chair and Ch Exec of NHS Lothian, (and the Integrated Joint Board), on behalf of the Southside Association which is a representative body for local people. I replicate it here with permission.

"The Southside Association is greatly concerned about the news that the above General Practitioners’ Surgery is in all likelihood to close.
 The practice has been there for many years and has provided an excellent service to generations of families.  I have been a patient there for over 25 years, and share the shock and disappointment about the news with many of the local residents.
 We all are aware of the problems recruiting new and replacement GPs, and hope that this matter will be addressed by the appropriate authorities.
The area already lost GP provision when the practice at East Preston Street closed.  There are two large accommodation blocks for about 850 students under construction yards from the present premises occupied by the Southside Surgery, and the Richard Verney Health Centre for students at Potterrow will have to be relocated when that site is redeveloped.
 The patient list at Southside Surgery is sizeable, and it is hard to believe that the remaining practices will have the capacity to absorb dispersal of over 5000 patients from there.
 We understand that it will not be easy to secure alternative premises for the surgery.  There are to be two sections on the ground floor of the St Leonard’s Street Unite student blocks available for offices or shops, and indeed we were led to believe that one of these sections was to accommodate a GP’s surgery.   Has this option been explored and/ or ruled out?  Is modification of another local building feasible?
 We urge all concerned to work to resolve the accommodation problem.  We note the comments as reported in the Evening News last week by Mr George Walker about securing premises well ahead of the expected deadline, and trust that this confidence will be justified.
  Yours faithfully
 By e-mail
 Colin E Christison

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Road restrictions in Southside

There are road restrictions from tomorrow between West Richmond Street and East Crosscauseway for cable ducting work for a period of four days until Sunday.

The streets affected are Simon Square, Davie Street and Howden Street and there will be access and waiting restrictions for vehicles.

Monday, 25 July 2016

Map library renovations scheduled for another two years

It seem like the map library in Causewayside has been encrusted in scaffolding for many year.  It has.  But the roof, glass and stonework of the building are still being renovated and this work is scheduled to continue for another two years.

From this month the entrance to the Maps Reading Room has moved to 33 Salisbury Place (this was the old public entrance until the reading room moved 5 years ago).

Meanwhile, opening hours for the Maps Reading Room have changed and work is continuing to make many of the maps available online.  See here for details.

Friday, 22 July 2016

3 years jail for Priestfield bogus workman culprit

Yesterday Robert Stewart was sent to prison for defrauding an 87 year old Priestfield man of almost £150,000 last year.

The 21 year old accused was sentenced to 3 years in prison yesterday at Edinburgh Sheriff Court.

Full story here.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Saturday closure of Teviot Place

Teviot Place between Forrest Road and Bristo Place is to be closed to vehicle traffic on Saturday in order to bring in yet another crane to the area.

The closure is expected to be between 5am and 5pm - perhaps not for the full period.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Further on the Bernard Terrace Surgery - it may close next year

Yesterday I noted that the Souhside GP Surgery in Bernard Terrace is to be taken over by NHS Lothian rather than being run as an independent practice.

But there is a more significant threat.  I understand the Surgery building requires to be sold by the summer of 2017.

NHS Lothian are looking at alternatives but there appear to be limited options and it may yet be that the practice may close and patients be dispersed to other surgeries.

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

GP crisis in the Southside

The Southside Surgery in Bernard Terrace is to be taken over by NHS Lothian later this year after the GP partnership has found it increasingly difficult to recruit GPs.  Perhaps best if I include extracts from the notification.

"You may be aware from the media of some of the difficulties facing General Practice which have been mounting for a number of years. Unfortunately these problems have come to a head at Southside Surgery.
Over the past two years we have found it impossible to recruit new GP partners due to the massively increased work loads and reduced practice income.  This means that instead of our previous four partners and one salaried doctor we are now left with only two partners (Drs Sanderson and Reive).  We are very fortunate to have two very good salaried doctors (Drs Corcoran and Alshaikly).  We are very grateful to them for their hard work and support.
 Unfortunately, and with great regret, however, we have reached the stage that our partnership is unsustainable and we have asked Lothian Health Board to take over running our practice.  All existing staff including all the doctors will remain in post and patients should notice little change in the service we provide.  This change will happen in November or December 2016.  We are one of several practices who are having to go down this route. . ."

Sciennes 'School Streets' report due at end of August

The trial of closing some streets around Sciennes primary school will be the subject of a report which goes to the  Council's Transport and Environment Committee on 30th August.  The streets are closed to motor traffic for a period of around half an hour at the beginning and end of the school day to prevent congestion and make it easier for children to get safely to and from school.

I don't know what the conclusions will be but the report will be available here from 24th August.

Monday, 4 July 2016

Tragic death of teacher lived locally in Newington

Recently retired Craigroyston teacher Des Rubens died tragically last week in a fall in the Swiss Alps.

He was an experienced mountaineer and had taken school trips canoeing, abseiling at Blackford Quarry and mountain climbing far and near.

More details here.

Deep sympathy to his family and friends.