- Posted Wednesday April 16, 2014
Nic and I were thrilled to be invited along to the Western Area Practice Manager’s Annual Conference in Northern Ireland last week. It was held at the most fantastic venue, a gorgeous place called Lusty Beg Island in County Fermanagh.
This was Nic’s first experience of attending such a conference and we would like to say a big thank you to Jackie Conway for inviting us as well as to Lisa and Magella for organising everything.
On the road to Lusty Beg
So the flight over to Northern Ireland was pretty uneventful, although slightly turbulent, but what a gorgeous day for flying....
Driving across from Belfast gave us the opportunity to see some wonderful scenery and we even saw some polar bear statues in a front garden and another with a life size show jumper! We arrived at the ferry landing to be greeted with this... needless to say we were careful not to drive too fast up to the water.
The ferry over to Lusty Beg was seriously exciting - for me anyway, Nic was slightly alarmed at the size of the extremely small vessel and refused to get out of the car, to be fair it was only about 2 minutes over to the island, but the views were breathtaking.
‘I wouldn’t be without FPM!’ – Liz Harvey, Bridge Street Family Practice
Liam had arranged for our equipment to be couriered over and so we were surprised to see it waiting there on the boat for us.
Jackie was there waiting for us and we spent a lovely evening over dinner chatting about General Practice and the trials and tribulations of a practice manager in preparation for the next day’s event.
Early the following morning, we were all ready and waiting for the practice manager’s arrival and we had prepared a presentation ‘A week in the life of a Practice Manager’. The presentation went well and everyone could relate to the tales we had to tell. There were lots of laughs and we had devised a short quiz giving the delegates the opportunity to win a Kindle Wi-fi: joking along the way that this was just to make sure everyone was listening!
‘Presentation was very useful, has given me lots to think about’ – Siobhan Sweeney, Glendermott Medical
Interest was expressed by the practice managers on subscribing to FPM as a group, Thornfields training around effective facilities management, My Surgery Website and iQ Medical Employment Manager and Health & Safety Manger and everyone could see how the FPM services could support them in their role.
The first day was finished off nicely with a lovely three course meal and gave Nic and I a chance to catch up with people on a more informal level; it is quite amazing that you can travel to a whole other country and meet the cousin of an old friend of yours from South Shields! Shout out to Joanne McCay! We then selected the winner of the prize draw – Congratulations to Michelle McNulty who won the Kindle Wi-Fi.
What a fantastic group of practice managers, it is obvious that they support each other in their roles and feedback from their event was that they had found it very useful. Some of the comments we received about FPM Group products and services were great, so thanks to everyone for that – it certainly made our trip to Northern Ireland worthwhile. We very much look forward to working with you all in the future and hopefully will meet again.
Back on the road...
Friday’s trip back to Leeds got off to a shaky start with a broken down car on the ferry (there is only room for 2 cars) although that was quickly resolved and I even got to have a sit in the ferry driver seat on the way back!
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