CMO Annual Report 2020- 2021

16 Chief Medical Officer for Scotland Annual Report 2020 -2021 DELIVERING PERSONALISED CARE The COVID-19 pandemic has created a fresh set of challenges across our health and care system. We have had to rethink and transform our current services to allow us to continue to deliver safe, effective and personalised care in the most difficult circumstances. We have also had to innovate our practice in response to evolving knowledge of the virus and the disease it causes. The pandemic has allowed the principles of Realistic Medicine to come to the fore. Since its start, I have been struck by the sheer number of professionals advocating for the practise of Realistic Medicine, now more than ever. This view was further reinforced through a series of engagement workshops held in December. Here, people reiterated that continuing to build a personalised approach to care through shared decision-making is the key to delivering care that people really value. This approach also reduces harm and waste. A PERSONALISED APPROACH TO CARE Delivering personalised care is a priority for NHS Scotland and the Scottish Government. 42 During 2020, we were confronted with the need to accelerate our practice as we learned more about the COVID-19 virus, and reconfigured our health and care services for a very different context. Collaborative working with, and between, experts equipped us with the knowledge to refine our approaches. Most importantly, listening to patients, and those close to them, has really helped us understand what matters to them. It has ensured that we continue to deliver the careful and kind care we discussed in Personalising Realistic Medicine . Shielding The Scottish Government’s shielding programme was introduced in mid-March and advised shielding of those at highest risk of developing serious illness if they contracted the COVID-19 virus. Those who were shielding were given support, including free grocery boxes, home delivery of medication, and priority access to supermarket home delivery slots. By listening to those who were shielding, it became clear that isolation was having a major impact on the mental health of many people, and a more person-centred approach was needed. 43 In Shielding: A Way Forward for Scotland we set out a new approach to shielding. In line with Realistic Medicine, our aim is for people who are shielding to be able to make informed decisions that allow them to reduce their risk of catching COVID-19, while minimising the adverse impact of shielding on their wellbeing. This new approach supports people to understand their clinical risk and the risk associated with day-to-day activities, as well as the steps they can take to mitigate risk. We provided information, advice and tools to support people to make informed choices about how to stay safe, and protect themselves mentally and physically. The information found here can also be of benefit to others who are at higher risk from COVID-19 due to age or pre-existing health conditions. REALISTIC MEDICINE CANWE: CHANGEOURSTYLETO SHAREDDECISION-MAKING BUILD A PERSONALISED APPROACH TO CARE REDUCE HARM TACKLE UNWARRANTED VARIATION IN PRACTICE AND OUTCOMES AND WASTE MANAGE RISK BETTER BECOME IMPROVERS AND INNOVATORS