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The Pulse News from The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Issue 135 Autumn 2013

Rt Hon John Randall MP

Fracture Clinic opening

Hospital Funding creating a dementia friendly environment

The Pulse


Autumn 2013 Issue 135




A word from Shane DeGaris

Our Chief Executive reflects on patient experience


Creating a dementia friendly environment


Rehabilitation patients benefit from lottery award Alderbourne Unit receives funding


Teaching excellence Awards for staff



2013 Staff Survey

8-9 10

Have your say

New Fracture Clinic Opened by Rt Hon John Randall MP

Comfort at Night Improving patient care


Summer panto

12-13 14


Dementia funding


Fun for children

Supporting clinical trials Focus on R&D

Governor elections Nominations wanted for governors

What it means to be a governor John Coleman, Public Governor


Overseas patients


Hillingdon among best for hip care

Managing care and costs We have some of the best results in London

Who’s who Produced by: The Communications Department Email: Print: Streamline Your Print Contributing photographer: Isabelle Plasschaert

Follow us @HillingdonNHSFT

2 The Pulse The Pulse

The Pulse magazine is for our patients, local people, staff and members of The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Copies can be picked up from the Trust and downloaded from our website

WELCOME Chief Executive Shane DeGaris

Shane talks to a patient during a ward visit

A word from Shane The annual flu jab is a sure sign that winter is approaching and I, like many colleagues at the Trust, have already received my shot.

The vaccination of hospital staff, elderly people and vulnerable patients helps to limit the impact that winter has on the NHS. In recent years the pressure felt by acute trusts during the winter months has been increasing and the signs are that 2013/14 will be no different. To help develop my understanding of the challenges faced by frontline staff and the

experience of those patients in our care, during the winter months and throughout the year, I regularly visit wards and departments. During these visits I take time to observe care rounds and talk with staff and patients. This helps me to build a clearer picture of where we are doing well and also identify areas where we can improve. It is also invaluable to hear first hand from patients about their experiences in our hospital, which I can link to the feedback we receive from the information gathered in the Friends and Family Test. The Trust’s vision clearly states

our commitment to putting compassionate care, safety and quality at the heart of everything we do. A new initiative that reflects this commitment is the Comfort at Night campaign, featured inside the autumn issue of The Pulse. The campaign focuses on the needs of patients at night time, ensuring that their care and safety needs are met. I hope you enjoy reading The Pulse and welcome your feedback and comments to myself or via

Shane DeGaris

Chief Executive The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 3


Creating a dementia friendly environment Artwork next to each bed selected from local Artists and themes

New windows to allow good views out to the gardens and daylight in

Strong colours for wayfinding and ward recognition. Local supergraphic theme easy to spot from a distance

A view to the garden at the entrance to the ward


The Pulse

Supergraphic theme for the corridor with hand rail combined



he Trust has secured £845,000 to create a dementia–friendly environment on Beaconsfield East.

Earlier this year, NHS Trusts were invited to bid for Capital Funding from the Department of Health. This funding is part of a £50 million allocation for England to create pioneering care environments designed for the needs of people with dementia. It will mean that the Hospital will be able to enhance the experience of patients and their carers through the provision of both quiet and stimulating inside and outdoor areas. Improvement works will include an upgrade to ward décor including lighting, flooring and signage, the creation of a patient day-room including dining area and the creation of a Sensory Room and Sensory Garden. Some of the features that will make this ward very different are:

A welcoming entrance The ward clerk’s desk and Ward Manager’s office are being relocated to the top of the ward so that patients and visitors can speak to someone as soon as they arrive.

Rehabilitation focus


The ward will continue to specialise in rehabilitation. The Discharge lounge has now gone and will be replaced by a day room with a dining section and kitchen area. As well as providing a social space for patients and carers, it will also provide a base for rehabilitation activities. Within this space there will be a separate Sensory Room.

The lighting is being updated to ensure the ward is always bright, which is known to be important when designing for dementia. There will also be the ability to dim lighting which can be helpful if someone is suffering from delirium.

Use of artwork The artwork is being commissioned especially for the ward, the art team have experience of creating environments that are supportive for patients with dementia. The art will be both therapeutic in that it will help way finding and create a calming ambience, and also enhance the overall patient experience as the ward will look non-clinical and attractive. • Each bay will have a distinct colour • Each bed space will have a distinctive, individual picture above the bed head • There will be visual links with the garden • Toilet doors will be colour coded to aid recognition and their signs will include pictures as well as words

The hospital will be able to enhance the experience of patients and their carers through the provision of both quiet and stimulating inside and outdoor areas. Garden

A garden designer, again with experience in dementia settings, is creating a safe (enclosed) garden. There will be an upper terrace section and a lower area with paths and seating. Plants will stimulate the senses eg, lavender for fragrance. There will also be fruit trees. As well as giving patients and visitors somewhere beautiful and stimulating to walk around or sit together in, the garden will be used by the therapists to aid rehabilitation.


he Trust also held a fundraising cake sale last month where £320 was raised towards improving resources for patients who have dementia and are with us in hospital. Trust staff also took part in the Memory Walk to support our local branch of the Alzheimer’s Society. Overall the walk has raised over £300 which will be put to good use supporting people affected by dementia.

Staff and members of the public take part in the “Memory walk” to support the Alzheimers society

Hillingdon Hospital 5


Rehabilitation patients benefit from lottery funding The Alderbourne Unit at Hillingdon Hospital has received an award of £9887 from the Big Lottery Fund.

The money will be used to provide computer access for patients with complex physical and communication needs. Alderbourne is a specialist rehabilitation unit for patients who have suffered complex strokes, Multiple Sclerosis, spinal cord injury or brain injury. Rehabilitation can be a long process with some patients staying on the unit for several months. Dr Ajoy Nair, Consultant in Rehabilitation Medicine, said: “The new technology will enable patients to control their communication device or computer by using their eyes. Communication can take place by using text or symbols to generate synthesised or digitised

Patients will benefit from new technology after lottery funding

speech – perfect for asking or answering questions, having a conversation, telling a joke or simply saying hello. “By using this approach patients will be better informed about their condition, reducing isolation and aiding their recovery. Most of the patients treated on the unit are

aged between 16 and 65 so the new technology will also prepare working age adults achieve their goals. The award from the Big Lottery Fund is extremely welcome and thanks must go to Janice Fisher, Health Care Assistant, for her dedication in dealing with the stringent application process.”

Staff win three teaching awards S

Staff from The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust have received three “Teaching Excellence Awards” for their undergraduate work with Imperial College London. The awards, which are open to all of the North West Thames healthcare professionals who teach students from Imperial College, are presented to 10 individuals each year. Stefan Krok-Pazkowski, Undergraduate Manager at Hillingdon Hospital, said: “We have always been really pleased


The Pulse

when we’ve received awards and nominations in the past, but to get three wins this year really is unprecedented.” The three award winners at Hillingdon include Dr Andrew Greenland, Consultant in Emergency Medicine, Dr Wojtek Rakowicz, Consultant Neurologist and, a previous winner of the award and Dr Christopher Kelley, Consultant Surgeon. The nominees are judged on the extent of their teaching commitment, their contribution to the Imperial College course, innovations to

teaching and any exceptional practice shown by the nominee. Dr Andrew Greenland, Consultant in Emergency Medicine, said “The training of tomorrow’s doctors is vitally important, we all have a duty to ensure that our medical students receive the best possible educational experience when they are attached to our hospital, since the knowledge and wisdom we can impart, will positively shape the way medicine is practiced in the future. After all, it is these folk who will be caring for us in years to come.”


2013 NHS Staff Survey Have your say

The annual NHS Staff Survey helps to improve the working life of staff and the care provided to patients The results are collated independently by Quality Health on behalf of the Care Quality Commission and the feedback recieved by the Trust is anonymised. Ravinder Panesar, Organisational Development Advisor, says: “By completing the survey staff will provide a picture of where, as an employer, we are doing well and importantly identify those areas where change is needed. “Last year we had a return rate of 44 percent and are keen to build on that in 2013. The completion deadline is November 29th so my message to colleagues is please don’t delay in having your say.”

Survey responses help improve the workplace

Responding to feedback In 2012 staff told us:

“There needs to be more opportunities for job relevant training, learning or development”.

We have:

• Increased development and training opportunities for staff • Undertaken the talent management process for nearly 500 staff. • Launched new leadership training for staff.

“We work in a stressful environment where staff are working additional hours.”

“More needs to be done to prevent harassment, violence and bullying in the Trust.”

We have:

We have:

• Recruited staff to reduce the pressure on those working long hours. • Trained managers about working in a pressurised environment. • Provided support through our employee assistance programme.

• Continued to increase the number of CARES Ambassadors • Worked to recruit the right people, with the right values, to every role. • Introduced customer care training across the Trust • Recognise those who display our CARES values. 77


New Fracture Clinic improves the patient journey The Right Honourable John Randall MP visited Hillingdon Hospital during October to officially open the new Fracture Clinic.

John Randall meets: Christine Lowe-Faria (Matron), Richard GrocottMason (Joint Medical Director) and Mike Robison (Trust Chairman) The opening marked the completion of the first phase of the £12.3m modernisation of the Trust’s Emergency Department. The Fracture Clinic and adjacent plaster room offer patients modern treatment facilities and acomfortable waiting area. The clinic treats over 3,000 patients each month with many requiring casting in the plaster room.


The Pulse

The most common fractures treated are to the wrist and ankle. The old Fracture Clinic and plaster room were located in two separate areas of the hospital making moving between them difficult particularly for patients who were on crutches or suffering from pain. The new facilities help staff to plan the care patients more easily and resulting in a smoother journey between clinics and a shorter stay in hospital.


Refurbished Fracture Clinic cubicles

In opening the new facility Mr Randall told staff that he had been a Fracture Clinic patient at the hospital during the 1960s. He added:” Clearly the service has changed a great deal since that time and the investments currently being made are transforming patient services. However, what makes Hillingdon Hospital special to the vast majority of its patients is the dedication and commitment of the staff who work here.”

What makes Hillingdon Hospital special to the vast majority of its patients is the dedication and commitment of the staff who work here.

Consultant Surgeon, David Ahearne, welcomes John Randall

New funding will help to create a dementia friendly environment for patients 9


Night staff focus on patients comfort and noise levels

Comfort at night to helps patients sleep tight Feedback from the Friends and Family Test has shown that for some patients wards can be too noisy and bright at night. Examples provided included: • • •

Staff talking and walking loudly. Noise from alarms and waste bins, phones and TVs. Patient transfers.

Responding to these concerns the Trust has launched the Comfort at Night campaign to help patients rest at night time. Theresa Murphy, Executive Director of Nursing and

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Patient Experience, explains: “It is important that all of our patients receive a high standard of care whatever the time of day or night. This new initiative will focus on three key areas, the needs of patients, the behaviour of staff and the ward environment.” Changes being introduced include:

Patient care •

• •

Explain in advance why a patient may need to be woken up for medication or other planned care. When necessary help patients to wash at night. Make spare pillows and blankets available.

Staff awareness and attitude •

• •

Ensure that essential nursing and midwifery standards, aligned with our CARES values, apply 24hrs a day. Talk quietly at night, particularly when on wards. Staff shoes must meet the uniform policy.

Improving the environment •

Set a standard for ward ‘lights out’ or dimmed at night and ‘lights on’ the morning. Reduce noise from waste bins.


Summer panto brings smiles to children An interactive performance of Sleeping Beauty was staged exclusively for Starlight Children’s Foundation by The Panto Company and was performed to an audience of children and parents at Hillingdon Hospitals “Wendy Ward”. Hayley Bryant, who plays Fairy Nuff in Sleeping Beauty, said, “Starlight’s Summer Panto is designed to be really engaging and entertaining for the children and we hope that the performance gave the patients

there a good dose of fun. From their beaming smiles, it certainly looked as though they were enjoying the show.” Starlight and the Panto Company will visit 100 hospitals and hospices over the course of an eight week tour and the pantomime’s four actors play a range of characters and will dance and sing for the young patients, their families and the staff. Jo Davidson, Paediatric Oncology Nurse Specialist, said: “It was a fabulous show,

children and adults there were all booing, hissing and cheering the characters on and judging from the level of noise everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.” Starlight Children’s Foundation provides entertainment in hospitals and hospices across the UK and grants wishes for children with serious and terminal illnesses. For more information on Starlight Children’s Foundation, visit

“They’re behind you...” beaming smiles at Hillingdon’s summer panto 11


Supporting clinical trials

Members of the R&D Team (left to right): Nasseri Mariam, Natasha Mahabir, Geraldine Landers, Melinda Holden and Alexandra Diaz

The Trust is committed to the NHS Research & Development (R&D) agenda and supports clinical trials which help to establish if new treatments are safe, have any side effects and are better than those already available. The R&D team based at Hillingdon Hospital work to inform patients about research that is relevant to them and offer, those who choose to, the opportunity to take part in clinical trials. Geraldine Landers, R&D Manager explains: “Last year we ran 65 clinical trials across the Trust in areas such as haematology, oncology, stroke, diabetes, and cardiology. Rigorous processes and regulations are in place to protect patients who take part in trials and to keep risk to a minimum. “Researchers only ask patients

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who meet specific criteria to take part. Permission is always sought (‘informed consent’) before entering patients into a trial and participants can pull out at any time without affecting their ongoing NHS treatment. Importantly, all clinical trial records are kept confidential.”

Patient perspective Ashish Sutaria, 35, from Uxbridge has taken part in 2 haematology trials and answers questions about his time and experiences during the trials. Why did you decide to take part in a clinical trial? “I had access to newer and better medication that had been tested throughout the world but was only available on the NHS through taking part in a clinical trial”

What were the benefits of taking part? “I changed my lifestyle to fit in with the drug regime e.g. yoga twice a day and eating a healthier diet. Having overcome my illness it gave me the confidence to open my own catering business. What support did you receive from hospital staff? “Everything was explained clearly to me and staff also helped in educating my family about the trial. Being on a trial meant that I had to attend twice as many follow-up appointments and spend a longer time with the consultants. I got to know all the staff really well and they went out of their way to help me”. Would you recommend taking part in trials to other patients? “Yes. You can always come off the trial if you want to.”

RESEARCH The R&D Department supports National Institute for Healthcare Researchfundedresearchundertaken in the Trust. For further information you can contact R&D on 01895 279021 or internal ext 3021


I had access to newer and better medication that had been tested throughout the world but was only available on the NHS through taking part in a clinical trial. Ashish Sutaria


Meet the team

Simon Dubrey: Consultant Cardiologist and Director of R&D heads the


Geraldine Landers: New R&D Manager (previously Stroke Research Nurse) replacing Gay Bineham who recently retired after 12 years in post. Mariam Nasseri: Senior Research Nurse who supports several generic trials including oncology, surgery, maternity and urology. Natasha Mahabir: Research Nurse who is supporting diabetic and

cardiology research.

Alexandra Diaz: Research Nurse who is supporting haematology


Melinda Holden: Stroke Research Nurse. Daniel Mcveigh: Clinical Trials Coordinator/Data Management Officer

supports the research staff with the set up and data management of these trials.

Ashish Sutaria recieving treatment during his clinical trial 13


Governor elections:

nominations wanted You – our staff and public members – are a central feature of the local accountability of a Foundation Trust. As a Foundation Trust we have greater freedom from central Government control – the members elect governors to hold the Board to account for the way the hospital is run and to ensure this is in the interests of the membership. Our public and staff governors reach the end of their three year term of office on 31st March 2014. The elections for these positions will therefore begin shortly and we are looking for public and staff members to put themselves forward for election. No formal qualifications or experience is required; governors simply need to be committed to the role and engage with the members they represent. Governors will have access to training and support from the Trust. There are two aspects to the governor role: The first aspect is to represent the members. This involves advising members on developments at the Trust; and also seeking members’ views on key strategic issues facing

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the Trust and feeding these back to the Board. The second aspect is to hold the Board to account. This involves exercising powers such as appointing and removing the Chair and NonExecutive Directors (and agreeing their pay), approving significant transactions at the Trust and any proposed large increases in non-NHS income for the Trust. It is important to note however, that governors are not responsible for the leadership or management of the Trust (this is the role of the Board and Chief Executive respectively). The governor role is therefore unpaid. In terms of time commitment, governors must as a minimum attend the quarterly meetings of the Council of Governors which are held at 5.30pm in the Civic Centre, Uxbridge and also spend time engaging with the members they represent. There are also opportunities for governors to be involved in some further groups or activities. John Coleman, Lead Governor, provides further insight into some of his activities as a Public Governor below.

We will be holding briefing sessions in December where you can find out more about being a governor and how to stand for election: • Monday 2nd December, 3pm – Lecture Theatre, Education Centre, Hillingdon Hospital • Wednesday 11th December, 7pm – Lecture Theatre, Education Centre, Hillingdon Hospital • Monday 16th December, 3pm – Lecture Theatre, Education Centre, Mount Vernon Hospital • Monday 16th December, 7pm – Lecture Theatre, Education Centre, Mount Vernon Hospital

If you cannot attend one of these sessions or have any further questions, please call the Foundation Trust Office on 0800 8766953 or email

The election process To put yourself forward you simply need to complete a nominations form that will be available from 10th January and return this by 28th January. Voting will then take place by secret postal ballot between 14th February and 7th March. Further information on the process will be provided at the briefing sessions in December.


What it means to be a governor

John Coleman, Public Governor

Firstly let me introduce myself. I am John Coleman, Public Governor and currently the elected Lead Governor. The previous article outlines the formal role of the governor and the election process. I thought it appropriate to give you my insight into the practicalities of being a governor. As well as attending the Council of Governors (CoG) meetings, governors are encouraged to engage with the members, be involved in committees/initiatives at the Trust and attend as many People in Partnership (PiP) meetings as possible. Below I have listed my activity during October, however it was an unusually busy month and not typical. It also reflects activities arising from my role as Lead Governor.

Lead governor role • Meet with Mike Robinson, Chair, to set the agenda for the October CoG meeting • Meet with David Coombs, Trust Secretary, to finalise the CoG agenda for the forthcoming meeting and discuss the Trust’s revised Constitution • Informal meeting with Shane De Garis, Chief Executive, and Mike Robinson • Licensing ceremony for the new Chaplain for the THH.

Governor role

• Full Council of Governors (CoG) meeting • Council of Governors Nominations & Remuneration Committee (elected role) • participate in the selection process for the Trust Chair (vacant on 1st April 2014) • decide the criteria and process for recruiting a replacement Non-Executive Director (vacant on 31st December 2013) • Exit meeting with the departing Non-Executive Director • Patient Champions event at the Civic Centre • Patient Led Assessment of the Care Environment (PLACE): attend presentation on the results achieved by the Trust in the recent National survey

• Monthly Drop-in Meeting with the Chief Executive and the Chair to discuss various topics concerning the Trust. • People in Partnership (PIP): formulate the agenda with Catherine Holly for the November meeting • Experience and Engagement Group (EEG): this is a meeting consisting of staff and Governors that monitors the performance of the Trust in terms of the patient experience.

Quite a busy month… but hopefully I have given you an overview of the role of a governor. It can be time consuming but believe me it is fulfilling and personally I believe we are contributing to the success of the Trust during these challenging times. 15


Overseas patients

The question and answer session which took place at the end of the Trust’s Annual Members Meeting in September included a lively debate on the costs to the NHS of treating overseas patients. With Hillingdon Hospital being so close to Heathrow it is important that the Trust operates a robust system for identifying overseas visitors, those who are not resident in the UK and therefore do not qualify for NHS treatment. In line with Department of Health regulations our staff look to identify overseas patients when they come to hospital for either inpatient and outpatient treatment. The Trust employs a dedicated overseas administrator who liaises with A&E and clinical areas across the Trust. The administrator is also responsible for interviewing

People in Partnership

overseas patients to confirm their entitlement to NHS care.

While it is important that we recover the costs associated with treating overseas visitors we must also ensure that they receive the same degree of respect, care and confidentiality as any NHS patient.

Paul Wratten, Director of Finance

The upcoming People in Partnership meetings will be held at following times and dates: 10th January 2014 13:00 - 15:30 Fairfield, Northwood Hills Evangelical Church, Windsor Close, Northwood Hills, HA6 1PD

24th March 2014 18:30 - 21:00 Committee Room 5 Civic Centre Uxbridge UB8 1UW

Hillingdon among best in London for hip care

The findings of the National Hip Fracture Database 2013 (NHFD), published during September, show the Trust to have some of the best results in London. The report is a clinically led, web-based audit of hip fracture care and secondary prevention. Care is audited against standards defined by the British Orthopaedic Association and British Geriatrics Society. Welcoming the NHFD findings Abbas Khakoo, the Trust’s Joint Medical Director, said: “The results show that we are achieving best practice across a range of quality standards and in terms of patients sent for surgery within 48 hours we are among the top performing trusts in London. Care of the elderly is a growing challenge for

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Providing good care pre and post operation the NHS. By providing good pre and post operative care we can help vulnerable patients to leave hospital safely and as soon as

possible and also ensure that the number of readmissions are kept to a minimum.”

The Pulse Autumn 2013  

The Pulse magazine is for our patients, local people, staff and members of The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Copies can be pick...