PATIENTS in Monklands Hospital, Airdrie, are the first in Scotland to benefit from a new system which allows them to order the food of their choice using iPads.

Every person will be given their own copy of NHS Lanarkshire's menu when they are admitted to a ward and will be able to look ahead to the week to review their preferred meals.

The system, called MenuPick, contains the menu cycle and bed configurations for each ward to allow staff to record patients' choices, which are then transmitted to the catering department using WiFi and 3G technology. Patients are then given an individual menu card with their meal trays detailing the choices they have made.

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Lesley Robertson, assistant head of hotel services, said it was the first hospital in the country to introduce the system.

She said: "The aim of the new system is to use modern technology and innovation to make meal times more enjoyable, interactive and improve patient experience."

"The feedback we have received has been positive."