Published: Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Chair blog: A spring in our step


It's nearly Easter, I'm doing my best to ignore all the chocolate on display, the daffodils are already out and Spring is in the air. And we are delighted to tell you that in 2012/13 we will be giving more patients the opportunity to have a spring in their step by carrying out more hip and knee replacements than ever before.


CHAIR-BLOG-MARCH.jpgWith the growing number of older people in our society, our orthopaedic service continues to be in high demand.


Since 2002, the Golden Jubilee National Hospital has increased capacity year on year, and in addition to this increased activity, we have redesigned our Orthopaedic service. The Golden Jubilee is now internationally recognised for its innovation and quality of care, helping patients to be back in the community faster by supporting independence, reducing length of stay in hospital and increasing mobility.


Although we currently carry out 20% of all hip and knee replacements for NHSScotland, over the last 12-24 months, we have experienced more requests from NHS Boards across the country than we currently have capacity for.  We have also increased our orthopaedic case complexity, and seen a substantial increase in the amount of hip and knee revision cases, which is more complex and needs highly skilled surgeons.


So in response to this national demand, we have agreed with the Scottish Government to expand our orthopaedic capacity by up to 300 cases per year. Put simply, we will be able to treat an additional 25 patients per month on top of our normal 220 joints per month. And this is over and above the other procedures we carry out in Orthopaedics, such as hand surgery.


This expansion provides a significant step up in the capacity of the Golden Jubilee and really solidifies and acknowledges our national role as a specialist orthopaedic centre of excellence.


But the Orthopaedic "team" is of course more than highly skilled surgeons.  Many dedicated staff from a range of different roles – physiotherapists, anaesthetics, nursing, administration staff, and theatre staff...all play a critical part.


And that is the point. To ensure that our patients have the highest quality care, we focus on all aspects of a patient's experience – from making an appointment, to having surgery, to being discharged. No one person can do all that's needed.  To really provide person centred, safe and effective care, it is all about teamwork.


So with Spring upon us and a spring in our step, our team embark on our expansion plans and look forward to treating more orthopaedic patients across Scotland than ever before.


Jeane Freeman


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