Highland minister privileged to help community in wake of GP surgery fire

Dr Jill Skeoch
Photograph courtesy pressandjournal.co.uk

A Highland Church of Scotland minister who converted her manse into a temporary medical centre following a devastating fire has said it was a "great privilege" to be able to help her community .

The Rev Tabea Baader of Fort Augustus Parish Church said she was very impressed by the response of "remarkable" staff at Cill Chuimein GP practice to ensure services were maintained in wake of the blaze which destroyed the building last month.

She described them as "angels in disguise."

The medical practice has now moved to the upper floor of the Telford Centre in Fort Augustus on a temporary basis until a more permanent solution is found.

Dr Jill Skeoch, GP at the practice, said: "I'm very grateful to Rev Tabea Baader for her hospitality and allowing us to use the manse - it was a very generous gesture and allowed us to still care for our patients while we looked for a more permanent solution.

"With this temporary solution now in place we will now work towards getting back to normal operations and would like to thank everyone for their patience and understanding during what has been a difficult time for the practice."

German-born Ms Baader, who also leads the congregation at Glengarry, said she was more than happy to help ensure patients did not have to spend an hour either travelling to Fort William or Inverness for treatment.

"The medical centre staff deserve the greatest respect as they have maintained their services in the most unfortunate of circumstances," she added.

"They had nothing at all to work on, no prescription pad, no equipment, just their bare hands.

"It has been a great privilege to have this group of people under my roof - they are remarkable, especially Dr Skeoch.

"Although I am glad to have some privacy again I am sad to see them go and if I had a choice I wouldn't mind them staying on because I feel that I have hosted angels in disguise."