Galashiels doctor set to write her last prescription

A Galashiels doctor is set to retire on Thursday, May 21, after treating patients in the town for 31 years.

By Kevin Janiak
Monday, 18th May 2020, 2:11 pm
Dr Gillian Arbuckle, who is due to retire on Thursday, May 21.
Dr Gillian Arbuckle, who is due to retire on Thursday, May 21.

Gillian Arbuckle, a GP at the Waverley Medical Practice in the town’s Currie Road, is set to put her stethoscope away for good after turning 60.

However, her plans for retirement are very much in hold due to the ongoing lockdown due to the coronavirus outbreak.

She told us: “A lot of the things I was looking forward to are now on hold, such as holidays and festivals, but I am looking forward to being able to relax and take things a bit easier.

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“However, as I’m not going anywhere any time soon, I am in a position to help out at the centre if needed.

“One of the most difficult things for me, given the lockdown, I have not been able to properly say goodbye to my patients, as I would normally have been doing.

“I’ve been looking after some of them for 31 years, so that’s one of the sad things about leaving.

“I’ll miss everyone at the health centre, all the doctors and the other staff, from my practice, as well as the other practices in the building.

“A lot of them are my friends as well as my colleagues, and I’ll miss getting all the gossip.”

Gillian will be replaced in June by one of her previous registrars, Aaron Graham, who was the last GP she was in charge of training.

She said: “It’s good to know I’m leaving my patients in very good hands indeed.”

There is one element of her job she won’t miss.

She said: “When I first started in the town, at Galashiels Cottage Hospital, I did have to supervise some births.

“I found it quite scary ... especially when I first started because if there were any problems, the nearest maternity unit was in Edinburgh.

“When I first started, we didn’t have mobile phone, just pagers, so you had to go out into the middle of nowhere on your own.

“So, given the rural nature of the Borders, I didn’t really enjoy going out to a call in the country at 2am on my own.

“But all in all, I’ve really enjoyed my time in the town, working with some very talented people, and I’ll miss them all.”