Older Peoples’ Health

MSc Gerontology Student Wins the Sue Pembrey Award for 2017

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Barbara L

Congratulations from everyone at the School to Barbara Lawson, who is a home manager at Kincaid House Care Home, Greenock, a home for people living with dementia. Barbara who is in the dissertation year of her MSc in Gerontology and Later Life Studies at UWS has been jointly awarded the prestigious Sue Pembrey Award for 2017. The Sue Pembrey Award which is awarded by the Foundation of Nursing Studies (FoNS)  is presented to an exemplary nurse/midwife leader (such as, a Ward Manager/ Sister/ Charge Nurse / Midwife Team Leader, Community Team Leader, Care Home Manager) who leads care delivery. They have to be an excellent role model, leading and demonstrating a commitment to enabling care (wherever it takes place) that is person-centred, high quality and safe and delivered by a team who feel supported and valued.  

Barbara who was nominated for the award by staff within the School was praised by the judges for being both a compassionate and expert advocate for older people with dementia and their families. She also demonstrated this through systematic approaches, innovation and commitment to establishing a caring culture which has enabled both staff and residents to flourish. Barbara’s nomination said that

Barbara is someone who moves nursing into the light for others and makes her mark in an unassuming but powerful way. She works in in the care home sector, an area often seen by some as perhaps requiring fewer skills and certainly this area is still less visible in nursing, yet when I speak to her and hear what others say about her, she epitomizes my idea of a nurse leader.’

In discussion with the judges, Barbara talked about the importance of self-awareness and how this had aided her throughout her own journey towards becoming an effective leader.

Barbara will be presented with her award at a ceremony being held in York on the 8th of December 2017.

Barbara shares this year’s award with Freedom Nwokedi who is a clinical team leader with NAViGO Health and Social Care CIC. Her team offers mental health provision for older adults in Lincolnshire.


Professor Tolson Speaking at the Global Summit on Alzheimer’s Disease

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Professor Debbie Tolson who leads the Alzheimer Scotland Centre for Policy and Practice at our Hamilton Campus is a plenary speaker at the Global Summit on Alzheimer’s Disease and other Neurodegenerative Disorders at the Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown in Lisbon on Monday 21 September.

Four Iberian institutions (Champalimaud Foundation, Queen Sofia Foundation, CIEN Foundation and CIBERBED) have collaborated to organise this major conference on World Alzheimer’s Day (21st September) under the Presidency of H.M Queen Sofia of Spain and Leonor Beleza, President of the Champalimaud Foundation.

The plenary talk will highlight UWS-led advanced dementia research and the innovative Palliare interdisciplinary education framework which was developed as part of the School’s contribution to this recently completed European Project.

Professor Tolson said: “It is an honour to be invited to speak at the Global Summit and an endorsement of our UWS international reputation for excellence in applied dementia research and dementia education. This is an exceptional opportunity to showcase our team’s leading work and to network with leaders in dementia healthcare, social care and biomedical sciences.”

Supporting Novice Researchers Event at Hamilton Campus

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On Thursday 31st August 2017, the School held a British Society of Gerontology small event at the Caird Building, Hamilton Campus.The event was supported by NHS Lanarkshire. The event successfully brought together students, older people, health and social care practitioners and lecturers from across Lanarkshire to look at some of the research and work carried out by the School and within NHS previously with the afternoon spent conducting a research jam which looked at generating ideas for key issues where research into health and social care practice would be likely to have the most benefit to the local population of older people.

A key message from the afternoon was nothing about us without us and the need for more humanistic approaches to be taken in future work. The report and feedback from today will be sent to the BSG, the Health Board and the participants and will be used to guide our Masters and PhD students working locally on what subjects could be examined and what type of research is required as they decide on their dissertation topics.

The final part of the day was the launch of our Tovertafel original which will be used in a local collaborative research project with Udston Hospital.

Teepa Snow Visits Hamilton Campus

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UWS student Tracey meets Teepa Snow


Teepa Snow one of America’s leading educators on dementia care visited our Hamilton Campus last Friday to conduct a workshop introducing her Positive Approach® to Care (PAC) techniques to a group of staff, students and practitioners from across Central and Southern Scotland. Teepa is a Registered Occupational Therapist with over 30 years of experience which has led to her developing training models that are now used by families and professionals working and living with people with dementia and other brain changes throughout the world.

A number of the staff at UWS have growing competence in the use of PAC techniques and it is hoped that as awareness of PAC grows they will be able to incorporate the techniques employed in PAC into our pre and post registration teaching. A fabulous day was had by everyone who managed to attend. We hope to invite Teepa back in future, watch this space!

The Past, Present and Future: Supporting Novice Researchers

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On Thursday 31st August 2017, the University of the West of Scotland School of Health Nursing and Midwifery is hosting a British Society of Gerontology event at the Caird Building, Hamilton Campus.The event is also being supported by NHS Lanarkshire. Called

The Past, Present and Future: Supporting Novice Researchers

The aim of the event is to bring together students, older people, practitioners and lecturers from across Lanarkshire to look at some of the research and work carried out previously and discuss possibilities for researching key later life issues considered important locally.

We have a number of places for staff, students and older people living locally to attend what will be an interesting day here at the Caird Building.

Details of the day can be downloaded from here

Plan for BSG Day_31stAug17

The day also includes the launch of the School’s Tovertafel

Which will be used in a co-operative project with Udston Hospital and Erskine Care Homes

If you would like to book a place to come along please contact Caroline Gibson at caroline.gibson@uws.ac.uk or phone 01698 894441.

(It’s free but places are restricted)

Senior Lecturer Features in Herald Article

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Margaret HiResMargaret Brown, Senior Lecturer and Depute Director, Alzheimer Scotland Centre for Policy and Practice, University of the West of Scotland has written a piece which has been published in the Herald Agenda Column today (16/08/2017)

The article discusses the need for Scotland to improve the education and training of all health and social care workers across Scotland in the light of the rising number of people both living with and consequently dying from dementia

The article can be viewed at:


MSc in Gerontology New Pathway Approved

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Within the School the NES/SSSC National Dementia Champions teaching team have been working towards setting up a Masters Programme that will extend the work they do by creating a new pathway through our MSc in Gerontology and Later Life Programme.

Last month saw the approval of this new pathway which has also involved an alteration to the name of the original MSc Programme. So the School now hosts:

An MSc in Gerontology and the new pathway the MSc in Gerontology (with Dementia Care). Details of both courses can be found at:


or contact the programme leader directly at raymond.duffy@uws.ac.uk