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PCDS Newsletter: PCDS Committee election candidate biographies

Voting for available positions on the PCDS Committee will take place at the 9th National PCDS Conference, in Birmingham on 8–9 November. Candidates biographies are presented below.

Jane Diggle
Jane qualified with a BSc (Hons) in Nursing in 1990 (Leeds) and has worked as a Practice Nurse for the past 19 years. She completed a second degree in 1999, gaining the Specialist Practitioner qualification in Community Healthcare Nursing. While she retains a generalist role, her special interest is in diabetes, for which she is clinical lead within her practice. She is an independent prescriber and has gained MSc modules in Insulin Management and New & Advanced Therapies from Leicester University.

She is a member of the editorial boards for Diabetes & Primary Care and the Journal of Diabetes Nursing and the current PCDS Committee, as well as the Forum for Injection Technique, which strives to encourage best practice in injection technique.

She delivers patient group education across the Wakefield district and is an accredited DESMOND educator. She is committed to supporting people with diabetes to self-manage their condition and is involved in promoting care planning to colleagues in her locality.

Practice nurses often work in relative isolation and are increasingly responsible for making independent clinical management decisions. Jane is keen to promote the role of practice nurse in the new NHS and the valuable contribution they make to high-quality diabetes care in the community. As a committee member she hopes she can continue to represent the challenges practice nurses face and encourage the sharing of knowledge, skills and expertise across the disciplines. 

Alia Gilani
Alia Gilani is a Health Inequalities Pharmacist who established a bilingual medication review service in 2002 in NHS Glasgow. Her interests lie in ethnic inequalities and diabetes. She helped establish and set up the MELT (Minority Ethnic Long Term medicines) service, which ran for over a decade. This was an open referral medication review service that allowed referrals to be received from both primary and secondary care. She has received several awards for her work, in which the service has been recognised locally and nationally. She was the Chair of the NHS Glasgow Diabetes Ethnicity and Inequalities Group.

Over the last decade she has also been running outreach clinics for South Asian people with diabetes in various locations (e.g. mosques and elderly centres). She is a member of the diabetes working group for the South Asian Health Foundation (SAHF) and regional lead for Scotland, became the first pharmacist on the PCDS Committee, and is a member of the Forum for Injection Technique group.

She has hosted several diabetes awareness days in community venues promoting SAHF and NHS services. She is on the editorial boards for Diabetes & Primary Care and Diabesity in Practice. She is involved in healthcare professionals’ education by delivering lectures on topics from managing diabetes during Ramadan to tackling health and ethnic inequalities. Recently she delivered a lecture at the first joint Royal College of General Practitioners and Royal Pharmaceutical Society diabetes conference.

Gwen Hall
Gwen Hall trained as a Mental Health Nurse in Scotland and, having moved to England, completed her general training in Surrey. She worked for many years as a Practice Nurse/Nurse Practitioner, Practice Nurse Trainer and Diabetes Facilitator. Latterly she became a Diabetes Specialist Nurse in Primary Care and this year took up a post with the award-winning Community Diabetes Team in Portsmouth. 

Gwen is Associate Editor-in-Chief of Diabetes & Primary Care, sits on the editorial board of Diabetes Digest and is a frequent contributor to the Journal of Diabetes Nursing. She has regularly published articles in these and other journals. In 2005, Gwen was elected Vice-Chair of the PCDS, a post she has enjoyed to this day. She was responsible for updating Mary MacKinnon’s book Providing Diabetes Care in General Practice and was awarded the Mary MacKinnon lecture at the Diabetes UK Annual Professional Conference in 2008. She continues to lecture widely on diabetes nationally. She is an Associate Clinical Teacher for the University of Warwick and a past Visiting Fellow of the University of Surrey.

Fiona Kirkland
Fiona became a Diabetes Specialist Nurse in 1997 and a Nurse Consultant for diabetes in 2005. Her philosophy of care delivery is based around the physical and psychological needs of the person with diabetes. A major part of the service delivery is to share knowledge and skills with other healthcare professionals, leading by example, and also with people with diabetes, aiming to increase confidence in self-management.

Fiona has led on some key areas of service development relating to care of the older person in care homes, diabetes service redesign (heading up an innovative nurse-led diabetes team in the community setting), and approaches to care delivery. Fiona has had many publications to share ideas and evaluations; she has also presented at national conferences and international meetings. In March 2010, Fiona presented the Mary MacKinnon lecture at the Diabetes UK Annual Professional Conference, titled “The Spirit of Respect”. Fiona is currently a PCDS Committee member and has contributed to Parliamentary Think Tanks focusing on reducing admissions of people with diabetes to hospital and Quality and Outcomes Framework targets, and attended a diabetes summit on better care for people with diabetes. Fiona is often an advisor for service developments and speaks nationally on clinical issues, educational programmes and service development.

She feels that the best part of her role is clinical practice, whether this is directly in specialist clinics or by working in general practice indirectly influencing the care being delivered through mentorship. The interesting part is matching the toolbox of pharmaceutical approaches and lifestyle choices that the person is prepared to make to the individual clinical picture.

Stephen Lawrence
Dr Stephen Lawrence graduated from Leeds School of Medicine in 1987. His interest in metabolic medicine was awakened after he completed a BSc (Hons) degree in Chemical Pathology during his intercalated year. He worked as a Medical Advisor for prisons for the Department of Health from 2003 to 2004, when he participated in an award-winning prison diabetes study. He has a passion for critical appraisal of evidence-based medicine and has presented on many occasions to a variety of audiences throughout and beyond the UK. He holds a jointly titled post of Clinical Diabetes Lead for the Royal College of General Practitioners and Primary Medical Advisor for Diabetes UK. He sits on the conference organising committee for Diabetes UK and is a current member of the PCDS Committee.

Dr Lawrence was instrumental in establishing an intermediate care GP with a Special Interest in diabetes clinic in Medway in 2003 in answer to the burgeoning burden of diabetes referrals to the local Medway Maritime Hospital.

He has written extensively on topics from the prevention of diabetes through treatment to the evolving role of community-based diabetes care. He trains healthcare professionals wishing to advance to supplementary or independent prescribing status. He has an avid interest in critical analysis of clinical trials and presenting information to colleagues in an unbiased yet interactive fashion.

Richard Quigley
Dr Richard Quigley is a full-time GP with a Special Interest in diabetes, working in South Glasgow. Currently the Treasurer of the PCDS, he leads the Scottish subcommittee, of which he is founder member. With the invaluable help of his colleagues he has helped grow PCDS in Scotland to 1000 professional members. The Committee has presence on the Scottish Diabetes Group, the overarching policy-making body for diabetes care in Scotland. Dr Quigley also has a major interest in clinical research ethics and represents primary care on the Scotland A Research Ethics Committee, which deliberates on all aspects of clinical research including first-in-human studies.

Dr Quigley is also a Clinical Tutor at the Department of Life Sciences, University of Glasgow, and lectures on subjects related to diabetes on a regular basis. More importantly, he has just blown 30 years of dust off his fiddle.

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