DG’s Virtual Visit & CHSS Presentation
Betty McDonald, this year’s District 1230 Governor, honoured the club with her virtual presence this week. Betty is a past-president of Greenock Rotary and in her short speech she outlined her own objectives for the year ahead and encouraged members to prepare for change as clubs come to terms with the inevitable impacts on Rotary of the many emerging societal changes. She finished her talk with a plug for the upcoming District Conference and congratulated our club on its many achievements as one of the largest clubs in the District.
The main speaker of the evening was Andrea McIntyre, Fund-Raising Manager with Chest, Heart & Stroke Scotland. CHSS is Scotland’s health charity supporting people and their families across Scotland with chest, heart and stroke conditions. Andrea explained that the charity’s mission is to make sure that living with a chest or heart condition, or after a stroke, is a life lived to the full. Their new strategy “No Life Half Lived” is designed to address the unmet needs – social, emotional and physical – of individuals and their families whose lives have been disrupted by the effects of these illnesses.
Every day in Scotland:
- 25 people will have a stroke
- 30 people will have a heart attack
- 46 people will be diagnosed with heart failure
- 1 in 11 people will struggle to breathe because of chronic chest illness
- 11,000 people are living with the impacts of stroke
- 19,000 people have chronic heart disease
- 12,000 people are living with lung disease
These are horrifyng statistics which will only have been worsened by the emerging, and not as yet fully understood affects of long-Covid (10% of those contracting COVID 19 are believed to suffer from long-Covid) and this is putting additional strain on the support services such as CHSS.
Chest, heart and stroke conditions did account for 40% of all adult deaths in Scotland but, due to increased survival rates, more people than ever before are living with chest, heart or stroke conditions. This, Andrea explained is the reason that CHSS’s “Hospital to Home Service” has been developed to help patients being discharged into a strange and sometimes frightening new world. This involves their Community Support Team working with the NHS through 4 phases of home support:
- Immediate (on leaving hospital)
- Long-term (steady recovery process)
- Volunteer support (other charitable groups)
- Expanded support chains (family and friends)
Anyone wishing to learn more, volunteer, or donate to CHSS can do so by visiting https://www.chss.org.uk/no-life-half-lived/ or phoning 0808 801 0899.
Charlie Steele gave a well-deserved vote of thanks to each speaker.