"Realistic medicine" is particularly valuable in these areas

"Realistic medicine" is particularly valuable in these areas

There is increasing focus on the training (and retraining) of medical professionals according to the principles of what has become labelled as "realistic medicine". The choice of label may be unfortunate - not easily understood by the general public and even in danger of being misinterpreted as something concerned with rationing of healthcare - I would suggest that "responsive medicine" or even better "listening medicine" might have been more immediately understood. HOWEVER, whatever it is called, the underlying principle that primary care and other medical services should be conducted in true collaboration with the patient, listening to what matters to the individual and allowing them the right to be involved in decisions regarding their own personal care, etc can be of particularly benefit and value to those in remote and rural areas, where everyday practical issues of location, access to transport, limited facilities, etc can all have a major bearing on how a person interacts with the health service and the practicality of any plan of treatment. In the extreme case, can they get treatment from their particular postcode? And even if the treatment is theoretically possible, can they cope in practice with the "overhead" of stress, time commitment, etc that may be involved, within the constraints placed on them by their medical condition?


Ableism is rife in NHS Highland and needs to be addressed and eradicated. This involves the proper training of staff, preferably via people with lived experience of illness, disability and age. Staff seem trained to treat these people as though they are 2 years old and don't have two brain cells to rub together: which reflects their training to date. Things need to change for the better and these people's views and choices in life needs to be heard and respected if they are to feel included in their communities as valued individuals, which they should be. Diversity and Inclusion no longer appear to include people of age or people with a disability. Why not? These are protected characteristics under the Equality Act.

We all have unique needs, and appropriate care can only be developed if it recognises this.

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