Friday, 27 February 2015

Letter to Chair of NHS Fife Board with tweets from 24 Feb15 meeting: "Families to me are what life is all about"

bio from NHS Fife website
On 25 February 2015 I sent a letter by Email to the Chair of NHS Fife health board, Allan Burns, with a link to the storify of tweets I put together from the board meeting on 24 February 2015.  No response as yet.

Mr Burns has spoken to me on a few occasions since the first board meeting I attended, on 29 April 2014, in Bute Hall at the Medical School, St Andrews.

Strapline: storify of tweets from yesterday's health board meeting with photos of the Lang Toun beach and high street

"Dear Allan

For your interest, here is a storify of my tweets from spectating at yesterday's NHS Fife board meeting:

By the time I got parked and into the meeting at the Town House, Kirkcaldy, it had already started so I could see no papers around.  Plus the parking place I got, at St Bryce Kirk, was 2 hours and not 4 hours as it used to be, when last I parked there.  So it meant I had to leave the meeting after about 90mins.  The fact I had no papers meant I really didn't know what was being discussed, in any detail, except to note that "shadow board" was often mentioned.

Observing the discussions it seemed to me that you were trying your best to bring everyone to order, to focus on the task at hand.  Employing "SMART" tactics, in management speak.  (I got an administration management degree in 1996, best student, did it in 2yrs instead of 3, at Fife College, Kirkcaldy)  However it appeared that others at the meeting like to talk for the sake of it and not to reach a decision.  I find that very frustrating and would not be able to thole being an NHS Fife board member.  It's bad enough being a spectator.

I sat on many committees back in the 1980's when a grassroots community worker in Rigside, South Lanarkshire, and other ex-mining communities.  Mostly voluntary work as a young mother bringing up my sons.  It was a great learning experience at the coal face, you might say.  I held a range of committee posts, on local groups and larger steering groups, Church and community.  Locally and further afield, in Lanark, Hamilton and Motherwell, then in Glasgow in a PT post with Strathclyde Youth Clubs Association by the end of the 80's.  I preferred chairing groups.  Now I wouldn't like it.  I prefer to be running on ahead with stuff, sometimes in tandem with others.

I'm not sure if I'll spectate at any more Fife health board meetings as there are so many other things I'm busy with, that are more productive.  Writing is mainly what I now do.  My father William (Willie) Patterson was a science fiction writer, with the Daily Express in London, 1956-69, Jeff Hawke daily comic strip:

We lived in Perth, my home town, and my dad travelled down and back to London.  He was a larger than life character, principled and autocratic, dying before his time, aged 57 in 1986.

Families to me are what life is all about.  It is why I am now a writer, activist and campaigner in mental health matters.

Yours sincerely,

Chrys Muirhead (Mrs)"

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