Michael Stewart from Central Legal Office Discusses The Relationship Between Realistic Medicine and Consent

Earlier this year I contributed to a Realistic Medicine symposium organised by colleagues at National Services Scotland. One of my themes was that the principles of Realistic Medicine and shared decision making should not be regarded as optional add-ons for clinicians interested in the area, but were completely embedded in the current law on consent….

Debbie McWilliam reflects on the Place of Birth Project in NHS Grampian

I am going to begin with a quote made popular by the magnificent Maya Angelou “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”. I’m sure that you can relate to this quote, we all can both in our personal and professional…

CMO Annual Report 2020 – 2021: Recover, Restore, Renew

The Chief Medical Officer has today published his annual report for 2020 – 2021: Recover, Restore, Renew.   The report provides the opportunity to reflect on our shared experience of the pandemic and highlight areas of good practice and innovation over the last year. It also provides the opportunity for us to identify areas that require…

Dr Catherine Calderwood on Good Morning Scotland

Dr Calderwood spoke to the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland about Realistic Medicine, growing up in Belfast, and her work as Chief Medical Officer. The programme is available on the BBC website until the 12th of August 2019. Catherine’s slot starts at around 30 minutes in.


  Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a major healthcare challenge. More and more people are being diagnosed with COPD, but patients aren’t able to access good quality care and treatment for their condition.   People with COPD can suffer from flare-ups of their condition, when their breathing becomes much worse than normal. These episodes…

Publication of Personalising Realistic Medicine

  The Chief Medical Officer published her fourth report, Personalising Realistic Medicine, on the 25th of April 2019.   The report is available on the Scottish Government website. You can also read Catherine’s column all about the report in the Scotsman here.

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s Realistic Medicine training module

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde have developed a helpful introduction to Realistic Medicine for clinicians, health and care professionals, and members of the public. The module can be accessed here.

Polypharmacy app

‘Polypharmacy’ just means ‘many medications’. It has often been applied to people who take five or more pills for their health conditions. However, polypharmacy is not necessarily a bad thing. For example, people who have had a heart attack often take four different kinds of drugs – to improve blood flow and reduce blood pressure….

Project Lift

Health and social care is changing, and our health and care leaders must change too. We need leaders with vision, who believe that success comes through putting people at the heart of everything we do. We need to nurture and grow this culture where it exists, and enable all those coming into the workforce to…

The Five Questions

Did you know that doctors are far less likely to choose certain kinds of treatment for themselves than the general population? 95% of doctors would not want to have cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) at the end of their lives, and 88% would choose not to have haemodialysis*. There are many reasons why doctors might choose to…