A PHARMACIST from Hardgate has been nominated for an unsung hero award for showing “compassion and kindness” towards a sick patient. 

Iain Rivans, 41, had been put forward for the patient’s choice category by a woman who had been diagnosed with leukaemia and was undergoing chemotherapy. 

In the nomination letter to award organisers GoToJobBoard, she had described how Iain had listened patiently and had gone above and beyond to help her during her treatment. 

After starting chemotherapy in October of 2016, she had been close to giving up due to severe sickness, and had significant pain swallowing tablets. 

Iain was determined to find a solution to provide relief, and did so by having the drugs made up in liquid form. He even organised for the medication to be dropped off at his patient’s home and checked in afterwards by phone.

For him, however, he wasn’t doing anything out of the ordinary. Iain said: “I’ve always had a good rapport with patients. I guess looking back I was doing a bit extra but to me I saw someone having a rough time and kept in touch with her. She was a very nervous patient and I just thought she could do with a bit of extra support.

“When she was at the start of her treatment, she was pretty reluctant to keep going. I guess you just get a feeling from the conversation that they might need looking after.

“It wasn’t overly difficult stuff. If I spoke to her on the Friday, I would follow up on the Monday and see how she got on. 

“After her first cycle, she was saying ‘I can’t carry on’. She was taking a lot of persuasion to keep going.” 

The patient, who was in her mid-40s and was receiving treatment at the Victoria Hospital in Kirkcaldy, had her last treatment in March 2017 and is now in remission and back at work. 

Iain was “humbled” to be put forward for the award and said: “I was just doing what came naturally but it was a lovely surprise that a patient nominated me unprompted.” 

“Hopefully more people will take a minute when they’re speaking to patients to check everything is okay.”

The awards ceremony will be held at The Principal Hotel in Manchester on February 23 and, despite being married, there was only one person on Iain’s mind for his plus one. 

The pharmacist has a close relationship with his mum Jean and, with his wife Lara’s blessing, will take her to the ceremony. 

Iain attributed his ability to pick up when something isn’t quite right with a patient’s mental wellbeing to his experience with his mum Jean, who suffers from depression.

Jean, who’ll accompany Iain to the ceremony – with the blessing of Iain’s wife Lara – said she “couldn’t wish for a better son” and has already picked out her dress for the night. 

She added: “I’m very pleased with him, in this day and age, when you read all the things going on in the world, I’m just thankful he’s a nice man. 

“I do suffer from depression and Iain’s been through it with me many times. People often don’t understand, so when he went through it with her [his patient], I think she was amazed he understood. 

“Even if he doesn’t win, I think he’s already a winner. The fact that he’s on the shortlist and the only one from Scotland. He’s just a caring person.”

Visit: www.unsungheroawards.com/