If a patient arrives at hospital in pyjamas, not having appropriate clothes to be discharged in can be uncomfortable and unsettling.
But thanks to a partnership between the hospital, Chelmsford CVS and Essex County Council, £3,000 has been spent on increasing and improving our clothing stock. It is hoped this will give patients a more dignified experience when they leave hospital.
The new clothes, which include jumpers, trousers and skirts with elasticated waists, t-shirts and underwear, build on the excellent work of associate director of nursing Angela Wade who started the clothing bank at the hospital.
Jonathan Wright, patient experience & voluntary services manager, explained where the initiative originated from: “We got feedback from the emergency department about patients not having suitable clothing. Some were wrapped in blankets or wearing dressing gowns and pyjamas.
“This was raised at a meeting between the Trust and community partners, and Lorraine Jarvis from Chelmsford CVS said, ‘We can solve this.’
“Chelmsford City Council then donated £3,000 to work with us to buy new clothes and distribute them in the emergency department and on our care of the elderly wards.
“The clothes have now arrived and patients are already starting to benefit, particularly on Writtle ward, which is where a lot of the patients go before they’re discharged.
“Chelmsford CVS got the clothes from local stores at reduced prices and tried to ensure all items were age-appropriate,” Jonathan added. “It is important that the clothing is not only appropriate for older patients but comfortable too.
“It’s a great scheme and shows what great support there is in the community of Chelmsford, and how well partnerships can work between the hospital and the community.”