Doctors gathering at a Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh conference in Edinburgh today [15 March 2017] will consider issues affecting the ageing population. 

‘Towards a Safer Journey in Old Age’ will explore the care journey of 84 year old ‘Mrs Stewart’, from the measures which can be utilised outside hospital to maintain health and wellbeing through common issues that many older people face within hospital and back home again, all the time trying to make sure that the patient remains as safe as possible. Simple steps such as care of vision, hearing and oral health can often be overlooked but can benefit the older patient greatly.

The keynote, ‘Dr Archibald Pitcairne’ lecture will be given by Dr Adam Gordon on the common elements of rehabilitation in hospital and at home. Dr Gordon said:

“Comparisons between different service   models  delivering rehabilitation have tended not to show significant advantages of one model over the other. However, this is likely to be a false dichotomy.

“The real question is where each service model fits in the rehabilitation and recovery journey. We’ll be considering and describing the merits and challenges of rehabilitation in different stages of the patient journey and what represents the right care, at the right time for older adults with frailty and rehabilitation needs”.

Prof Derek Bell, President of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, said:

“We are pleased to welcome all of our speakers and delegates to this conference today.  The ageing population is one of the key pressures for the NHS present and future, and we must continue to ensure that older patients experience the best possible care in the most suitable setting”.

Other speakers at the event include:

  • Dr Michael Gavin, Consultant Ophthalmologist, Gartnavel General Hospital, Glasgow on Sensory impairment: vision
  • Ms Varda Hood, Audiologist, Aberdeen  on Sensory impairment: hearing
  • Professor Angus Walls, Director of the Dental Institute, University of Edinburgh on Oral health
  • Dr Roger Jay, Consultant in Geriatric & General Medicine, Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals on Hip fracture/ osteoporosis update
  • Dr Irwin Foo, Consultant Anaesthetist, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh on Anaesthetic assessment of the older person
  • Professor Tom Robinson, Professor of Stroke Medicine, University of Leicester on Latest developments in stroke
  • Dr Graeme Hoyle, Consultant Physician, NHS Grampian on Intravenous fluid use in the older adult
  • Dr Helen Roberts, Associate Professor & Honorary Consultant in Geriatric Medicine, University of Southampton on Nutrition and sarcopenia
  • Dr Connor Bowbeer, Clinical Development Fellow, Caithness General Hospital on Audit of “The Big 6” and medicines reconciliation in Raigmore hip fracture patients
  • Dr Marie-Claire Grounds, ST3 Medicine of the Elderly, Liberton Hospital, Edinburgh on Parkinson’s disease in the hospital at home
  • Dr Roisin Healy, ST5 Care of the Elderly, Altnagelvin Hospital, Londonderry on Improving anticoagulant safety in hospital: a quality improvement project



Contact: Sara Collier 0131 247 3658


  1. The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh Symposium ’ Towards a Safer Journey in Older Age’ will be held at the College, 9 Queen Street, Edinburgh on Wednesday 15 March 2017. It is part of the College’s cover general medicine, medical specialties, public health, current and professional issues. More information on past and future events can be found here:
  2. The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh is an independent standard-setting body and professional membership organisation whose aim is to improve and maintain the quality of patient care.
  3.   Dr Adam Gordon is a Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Nottingham and Consultant Geriatrician at Derby Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. @adamgordon1978
  4. The conference can be followed live on twitter using the hashtag #rcpeCoE17 and via the College account @RCPEdin