Rural Fellowship on Orkney – Video

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Dr Holly Tyson, current Orkney Rural GP Fellow, has made this video to explain what her fellowship has involved so far, and to encourage folk to apply for this year’s intake of Rural Fellows.  Today is the last day for applications!  To apply, see this page about the fellowships, and the information on the NES website.

Here’s a transcript of her video commentary:

I am currently, undertaking the Scottish remote and rural fellowship programme on Orkney.  My work is split between working in Dounby Health centre on the West Mainland and their satellite practice in Evie and working in the single-handed practices on some of the remote Orkney Islands. These single-handed practices are dispensing practices.  Whilst working in the single handed practices I am doing all my own out of hours work and managing any emergencies for potentially prolonged periods until emergency transport is available to move the patient to a secondary care facility.  The most exciting moment I had was transferring a sick patient in the middle of the night by boat from the small isle of Hoy to mainland Orkney and riding on the bridge of the boat on the way back!

During this year I have done courses in pre-hospital emergency care, paediatric emergencies, ophthalmological emergencies, obstetric emergencies, neonatal examination and resuscitation. I would recommend future fellows to take full opportunity of the study leave and budget to explore their interests and learning needs as I found this a particular benefit of the year.

I am also undertaking a research project ‘Recruitment and Retention of Female GPs in their first five years post qualifying as GPs to Remote and Rural Areas. A qualitative study.’ This will compare data collected from female GPs in their first 5 years post qualifying as GPs who underwent the rural fellowship in Scotland and a similar demographic group in Australia. The study will cover key topics in rural recruitment and retention including social factors, life work balance, advancement of career and exposure to and support for rural clinical experience. The study will use data collected during interviews over a 6-month period. The objective is to identify what factors influence the retention of this group of medical graduates in rural areas. The conclusions of this study may contribute to initiatives aiming to enhance the working and living environment for rural GPs, and thus recruitment and retention.

One of the best things about living and working on Orkney is the quality of life. Aside from working in a friendly and close community my dog enjoys long walks on the beaches and frequently accompanies me to the small isles. Our hens provide our breakfast every morning and the pigs provide endless amusement. Although the winter was, as expected, rather cold and windy, we had fantastic Northern lights displays behind our house. I am looking forward to going to the folk festival this summer and getting out on the sea in the Kayaks. I would recommend the fellowship to anyone who likes a challenge and doing something a bit different.

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