Love Learning May - Case studies

Here are examples of learning taking place across West Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership.

30 July
Love Learning May

Melissa Rowlands, Dementia Advanced Nurse Practitioner

Since 2019, and throughout the pandemic, I have been studying for a MSc in advance practice, specialising in the diagnosis of Dementia.  

I provide education sessions to West Lothian HSCP and work with REACT H@H focusing on integration of medicine of the elderly and psychiatry of old age, providing a seamless service for patient and their carers to access timely diagnosis and support in West Lothian.  

Since the role has commenced, we have created a direct referral service across the partnership and continue to provide ongoing training and advice to improve the patient pathway and journey in West Lothian. 

In the last nine months we have introduced ANP clinics to reduce the time scale of Diagnosis of Dementia in West Lothian from a 12 month wait to a six month wait.  

I am currently finishing my prescribing portfolio to complete the pathway and as my official master's studies end, I am beginning more learning by developing the Dementia ANP in West Lothian. This will improve the patient journey and support my colleagues in their learning and development.  


Debbie Black - Directorate Assistant

Having worked for NHS Lothian for 16 years, and for West Lothian HSCP for the last six, Debbie moved to her current role in September.

As part of her learning journey, Debbie was recommended for a Project Management course at Heriot Watt University via her line manager.

"The HSCP does encourage your personal learning and development if you want to progress in your career. In other roles I've had to move departments to progress, however West Lothian HSCP is willing to invest in their staff and send people on courses.

"I was quite surprised to be approached about undertaking the course, however it was nice to I know that they believed I was capable of that."

The course took place over five days via Microsoft Teams through a day release programme. This meant that the need to travel was mitigated and could be done from home. The course has also been funded by the HSCP.

Debbie is now waiting for her final exam to take place at Heriot Watt University. After that she will be accredited in Project Management, an in-demand skillset which is much needed within West Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership.

"It was a really good course. The lecturer was very informative, and he broke the course down into examples that related to my own job. I now know how to apply concepts such as project cycles and business cases to my work.

"It was something that I'd never considered doing, however I really did enjoy the course and it is something I will now pursue in the future."


Katy Street - Communication and Engagement Lead

When you're busy, it's difficult to make time for learning, however by doing so you can make your job easier.

We spoke to Katy Street, West Lothian HSCP's Communication and Engagement Lead, about the benefits of taking time out to learn new practices.

Katy said: "When I joined West Lothian Health and Social Care partnership at the end of March, I had already worked for NHS Lothian, so many of the HSCP's operating systems were familiar to me. However the website content system was new to me and I realised I would have to learn how to use it.

"I took two hours out of my working week to read the instruction booklet and learning the content system. With a bit of trial and error, I now know how to use the website, fix issues and update content.

"This means I am more productive; I don't have to ask other staff members to help me, and I can deliver information to service users at a faster pace. By taking two hours I out of my day I have increased my confidence massively and I no longer worry that I will break the website!"

Staff can increase their productivity by as much as 10% by taking time out to train. If you feel you need time to learn a new system, talk to your line manager about taking a few hours out to learn. This will allow you to receive the skills and knowledge you need to conduct best practice in your area of expertise.

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