A Very Merry Christmas

18th December 2015

The last couple of weeks of the Parliamentary session have been incredibly busy both down in Westminster and at home. Locally, I was delighted to help open a new day surgery annexe at Crosshouse Hospital in which patients who undergo breast surgery will have a separate recovery area where they will be with others having similar treatment. Changes in surgical practice in recent years mean that many more breast cancer patients undergo day surgery, whereas previously they would spend several days in hospital and often form strong bonds and friendships with other women who were there at the same time. Now we have the new day surgery unit, the opportunity to offer and receive friendship and support from other patients, which can be so beneficial, is much greater.

I was also pleased to have the opportunity to visit HMS Gannet Search and Rescue prior to the search and rescue operation ceasing at the end of the year. I was highly impressed with both the team and the facility, and knowing the lifesaving service they routinely provide, this makes it all the more disappointing to know that, soon, they will no longer be operating out of Prestwick.

The crew very kindly gave me a flight around my constituency in one of the Sea King helicopters, which was such a thrill. Despite very high winds, the ride was surprisingly smooth and it was fascinating to see Central Ayrshire from the air at close quarters. It is without doubt the most exciting thing I have done since being elected and I would like to thank all the team for their time and commend them and their colleagues on the fantastic work they have done over the years.

As this year draws to a close, I would like to take the opportunity to wish all readers a Happy Christmas and a Peaceful New Year. It’s been an incredible and tumultuous year for me personally and I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for the kindness and support they have shown me since being elected.

Alongside all the celebrations that the festive period brings, I feel it is important to take a little time to remember in our thoughts and prayers those who do not experience happiness and peace at this time, both at home and across the wider world.

We can all do things to help those less fortunate than ourselves, such as donating items to our local foodbanks. With an increasing numbers of families being referred to foodbanks, it is essential they are well stocked for the holidays.

There is also the opportunity to support me as I take part in Dip wi’ a Nip on Boxing Day off Prestwick Esplanade. All monies raised go to Malcolm Sargent House. If you would like to sponsor me please go to https://www.justgiving.com/Dr-Philippa/ All support is greatly appreciated.