Old frames are big news
We made national headlines this week with our re-use of walking aids, frames and crutches being featured in the media.
BBC cameras were at Broomfield Hospital, getting the full story of how we have generated more than £25,000 of cost savings by re-using more than 2,000 pieces of equipment. This medical equipment is decontaminated and then issued to patients or recycled. Last year 21% of crutches issued were returned, and 61% of frames.
We also run a very successful furniture re-use scheme which is widely used by staff, and distribute unneeded equipment to local care homes or to charity where re-use is not possible.
The furniture scheme, launched in 2017, has so far saved us £61,000 by not having to order new items. We have also avoided eight tonnes of waste and 35 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
All of this fits in very nicely with our long-term sustainability goals.
Garry Bardsley, our Estates and Facilities Manager, was in the spotlight this week with two radio interviews and a TV appearance. Tom Browne, Consultant Surgeon and Out to Africa charity champion, was also featured on BBC Look East, promoting the work his team do, working closely with the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka, Zambia.
New scheme launched to support elderly patients
A new scheme has kicked off to ensure a faster and safer transfer of care for frail older people.
We joined with our CCG and ambulance colleagues to promote the launch of the new Red Bag scheme this week.
The Red Bags identify a patient as someone who has come to us from a care home. It comes with them to the hospital, carrying important personal information so that our staff have the right details available as soon as they arrive. Alongside the notes on their medication and medical conditions, the bag also contains personal items such as glasses, hearing aids, toiletries and clothes.
When the patient leaves us after their care, the care home then has updated details of any treatments or medications to ensure they continue to get the right care, and all property that went in to hospital with them goes back home in the red bag.
Dr Matthew Sweeting, a consultant for Medicine for the Elderly, said:
“This is an excellent scheme we have now put in place, as it gives us all really good information about the patient being brought in to us from the care home. This will help staff enormously, with all the medical details and their personal items in one secure, convenient place.
“Before they are discharged back to their care home, we make sure we update any changes to their medications whilst they are with us, so if they do need to come back again to hospital, we have the latest information available.”
Water and burns come together to acknowledge a great service
Two Essex and Suffolk Water employees visited the St Andrew's Centre this week to personally thank ward and theatre staff who cared for them after an horrific quad bike accident.
Amber Quilter and Amy Wilson were riding a quad bike over sand dunes near Dubai in 2017, when it flipped over and caught fire, leaving them trapped. Both suffered deep burns and were rushed to a hospital in Dubai, where they stayed for five days.
Needing specialist surgery, they were flown back to England and the St Andrew's Centre. This was the beginning of a painful year-long journey involving multiple operations, skin grafts and long rehabilitation.
Essex and Suffolk Water’s 'Make my Day' initiative celebrates both customers and people, and asks for nominations for the people or organisations that they felt deserved recognition, resulting in hundreds of suggestions. St Andrew's Centre was one of those highly nominated.
Amy and Amber came back to the hospital to say personally thank the staff who looked after them for the care they received.
"Words are not enough as a way of saying thank you to everyone at St Andrew's who cared for us both. We came here at the lowest point in our lives, and were shown such care and affection, supporting us during our worst moments, encouraging us, laughing and crying with us.
“We owe them all so much and this presentation of cakes and goodies to the staff is our own very small way of showing our gratitude."