Public health expert discusses ‘Humanising Healthcare’ at RGU seminar


Humanising Healthcare 1A leading public health expert in Scotland led a seminar at Robert Gordon University (RGU) this month to highlight best practice and transformative practice occurring in Scottish healthcare. 


Dr Margaret Hannah, Interim Director of Public Health at NHS Fife recently joined RGU’s School of Health Sciences as visiting Professor of Public Health.


She was the keynote speaker at the School’s ‘Humanising Healthcare’ seminar at the university’s Faculty of Health and Social Care on Monday, October 12.


A large number of delegates from across the health and social care and the voluntary sector travelled to Aberdeen from across Scotland and the north-west of England to attend the event.


The seminar, which was organised to highlight best practice and transformative practice occurring in Scottish healthcare, was also attended by Maureen Watt, Member of the Scottish Parliament for Aberdeen South & North Kincardine, who is also the Scottish Government Minister for Public Health.


Deputy Principal Professor John Harper welcomed delegates and gave the introduction before handing over to Mrs Elizabeth Hancock, Head of the university’s School of Health Sciences who introduced Maureen Watt MSP who addressed delegates before Dr Hannah led the ‘Humanising Healthcare’ discussions.


Mrs Hancock said: “We are delighted our Humanising Healthcare seminar was such a success and it was great to see so many delegates from the public health field that had travelled from around the country to attend.


“A lot of work is being done in this area and by looking at the work that Dr Hannah and others are doing to transform and improve healthcare it is clear there are a lot of positive changes in the pipeline which will benefit patients and healthcare workers across the country.”


Dr Hannah has had a long association with RGU in particular with the Occupational Therapy undergraduate programme where the principles of Fifth Wave Thinking have been integrated throughout the curriculum.


These principles have also been embedded in the university’s MSc Health Promotion and Public Health course as well as Integrating Fifth Wave Principles into Professional Practice.


The seminar addressed the key themes and ideas from her recent book ‘Humanising Healthcare’ which led to roundtable discussions regarding current challenges and an exploration of potential solutions.


Dr Hannah said: “Healthcare systems across the developed world are in trouble as changing patterns of disease, an ageing population and advances in drugs and technology feed an inexorable rise in costs outrunning our best efforts to contain them.


“I’ve looked at examples of healthcare from around the world in my book and highlighted a range of alternatives which could lead to a more sustainable culture of healthcare in the UK which will enable us all to live healthy, fulfilled lives at a fraction of the current cost.”


Maureen Watt MSP, added: “One of the biggest issues facing the Scottish Government, particularly in areas like Aberdeen, is ensuring that public health services are equipped to deal with 21st century challenges.


“I was delighted to attend the Humanising Healthcare event at RGU and listen to the ideas and experiences of health professionals from across the country. It has been an enlightening experience and has certainly given me food for thought.”



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