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New Masters degree to put the person at the centre of decision making

A Scottish university is putting “person-centred practice” front and centre as it launches Scotland's first Masters degree in the subject.

Queen Margaret University (QMU) is adding the new degree to its already well regarded Division of Nursing.

The MSc in person-centred practice is designed to meet the professional needs of practitioners from all disciplines by working in a variety of different health and social care settings.

Person-centredness is a concept that is focused on placing the person at the heart of decision-making in the health and social care sector.

However, to do this effectively requires a commitment to understanding how the context of care impacts on the individual, the team and organisational experience.

The course itself includes a variety of course routes that offer students the opportunity to build on their experience and develop an understanding of what positively contributes to the health of persons, groups and populations.

The programme is aimed at practitioners, policy makers and other research users in the health and social care field including those of gerontology, dementia care, public health, long-term conditions and palliative care.

The university aims to make a positive and lasting change in the country's health and social care sector with the new degree.

The Centre for Person-centred Practice Research attached to the programme aims to be a world-leading centre for research and development in the field.

The centre will focus on research that enhances service users experiences of care across a variety of care settings.

The new development reinforces NHS Scotland and the Scottish Government's strategic priority of delivering person-centred care, which meets the needs of people, carers and families.

Bill Lawson, programme leader for the new MSc, said: “Our new programme aims to enable practitioners from different work backgrounds to contribute to the health and well-being of persons, groups and populations in a way that is consistent with the values of person-centredness.

“Students can personalise their learning to their own situation, whether it's mental health, social care, infection control, acute care and community health.

“International students are particularly welcome as they offer a varied and different perspective to the context in which the learning occurs.”