Leading physician looks back on 25 years at the QE

Posted on Mon, 20/03/2017 by Clive Kelly, Consultant Rheumatologist and Acute Physician, QE Gateshead

As he approaches his retirement, Clive Kelly, Consultant Rheumatologist and Acute Physician, reflects on his 25-year career here at QE Gateshead.

As a physician I see a wide range of patients with many different problems that have led them to attend the hospital either as an emergency or an outpatient.

I spend my time mainly providing direct clinical care. This is evenly split between looking after inpatients with acute medical illness on the wards and treating patients with joint and bone disease who now largely attend as day cases or outpatients.

This represents a huge change from 25 years ago when we had two wards for inpatients, one for acute admissions at the QE and another at Bensham for elective and rehabilitation patients. Over time, more effective treatment has enabled us to close the ward at Bensham and alter the remit of the ward at the QE.

“I promised to help change things for the better”

When I started here in 1991, we had just six physicians and no junior doctors or registrar training programs. In addition, a high percentage of Gateshead residents went to Newcastle for their medical care. At my interview I promised to help change things for the better.

Now, instead of 18% of residents leaving Gateshead for their medical care, we now find that 30% of the patients that attend our service come from outside of Gateshead, with significant numbers from outside the North East.

We have also seen a highly successful teaching and training program develop and are proud that last year Gateshead was voted to be the top hospital in the country to train in.

“Our patients’ life expectancy has improved by 11 years”

I work within several different teams, including the rheumatology team who coordinate clinical care to patients with arthritis. There are now over 30 of us in this team including secretaries, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, psychologists, nurses and junior doctors, in addition to five other consultants.

Our patients’ life expectancy has improved by 11 years as a result of the effectiveness of early diagnosis and intervention with new tests and treatments.

It has been a privilege and a pleasure to work with many to help improve the quality and quantity of the health of our local population in Gateshead, and we are optimistic that this trend will continue into the foreseeable future.

Call us on 0191 482 0000

In emergencies dial 999 / Non-emergencies dial 111

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. You can change this and find out more by following this link.
Accept Cookies