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Summer 2017

up the check

The latest news from your hospital




Take me. Read me. Share me.

04 Site Improvements Continue

05 The Event in the Tent

05 Staff Health and Wellbeing


In this issue... A warm welcome 05

In May, we hosted our first ever Event in the Tent – an internal staff engagement event focussed around how we can improve as an organisation and how we can support our staff on our journey to achieving excellence. It is hard to believe that the event was nearly two months ago, but what a week it was! Each day nearly 500 of our staff joined us in the tent to hear about some of the work we are doing, taking part in classes or interactive sessions and sharing their ideas for how we can improve patient and staff experience. In addition to our teams showcasing some of the work they are doing, we were privileged to be joined by colleagues from the NHS and others who play an integral part in helping us transform, such as our digital health record partner Cerner. What was important from all of these is that through making small changes to the way we provide the services here at Milton Keynes, we can take a step closer to being recognised as an outstanding organisation. This was a great thing to do and I am immensely proud of what we have achieved. I also recognise that the hard work to make positive changes is now the priority. Over the course of the three days we received an incredible amount of feedback about what we should be doing to make improvements for both staff and patients. Better facilities for staff and the need for a much-improved staff intranet were just some of the things that our staff brought up but there is much more. We have already held a week of feedback sessions with staff on some of the key themes for action and development from what we heard throughout Event in the Tent – these include supporting learning and sharing good practice, increasing social and wellbeing opportunities for staff at work and improving communication. Now we need to turn the feedback received into actions. In this special edition of The Check Up, we look back on this innovative week and celebrate what we have achieved. You can read about some of the exciting developments to the hospital site, including the openings of ward 24 and the new main entrance. Finally, we bring you all the latest schemes and initiatives launching at the hospital, including our innovative Red2Green project. As always, your feedback is integral to making this newspaper a reflection on what you want to hear. If you have any thoughts, comments or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact the team. With kind regards, Professor Joe Harrison Chief Executive Milton Keynes University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust


Latest news


Site Improvements Continue


The Event in the Tent


International Nurses’ Day and Day of the Midwife celebration


A Quick Cuppa with Simon Lloyd


Milton Keynes support group receive award from the Queen!




Welcome to Staff Health and Wellbeing


Hello from Milton Keynes Hospital Charity


Meet the Editorial Team Sam Holden

Jacob Prichard

• Role: Head of Communications

• Role: Communications Manager

• Contact:

• Contact:

Background: A former sports journalist who joined the NHS to do something a bit more rewarding. He still misses all the free food in the press box.

• Background: Recent Business Management graduate looking to progress in a career in marketing, design and communications.

• Fun fact: Has a cat named after his favourite Ghostbuster – Winston.

• Fun fact: Has completed his Bronze and Silver Duke of Edinburgh awards with the Gold within touching distance.

Nicola Dowlen

Rachael Stirling

• Role: Communications Manager

• Role: Communications Officer

• Contact:

• Contact:

• Background: Spent years doing public relations and stakeholder engagement before joining the NHS to do something worthwhile.

• Background: Recent Art and Design graduate who has a passion for photography and all things social media.

• Fun fact: She has a huge horse named Titch.

• Fun fact: Once did a week’s work experience with the City of London Police in the ‘Scenes of Crime’ unit.

The Check Up

Dementia Café


Summer 2017

Latest news Dementia nurse Shadi Maleknia said: “I would like to thank everyone who was involved in putting on this event including Sharon and Annie (ward 1), Donna and Lisa (Pharmacy), Suzi (Dr Behnam’s secretary), Tina and Sarah (ward 20), Alisha (theatre), Julie Orr, Rachael Stirling, the safeguarding team, the Fundraising team and everyone who donated cups and cutlery. I apologise if I have missed or forgotten anyone’s name but everyone has been so helpful and we couldn’t have done it without your help.”

MKUH launched its very own Dementia Café in March with the aim of providing a relaxed and friendly atmosphere for our inpatients with dementia and their families or carers. The café enables inpatients to get to know each other and their carers, and can be a form of support. Patients can listen to music, have a chat with those who come to the café and speak to the dementia nursing team. The dementia nurses and fundraising team worked together to get items donated for the launch of the cafe and their hard work meant patients were able to enjoy tea and homemade cakes, baked by hospital staff, on china tea sets whilst chatting to each other and staff from around the hospital.

Since the launch, the café has grown in popularity and the sessions held in April and May saw many more patients attend with carers, family members and staff. Lee Fletcher, a hospital porter, came to the Dementia Café in May and sang for our patients. The patients who usually struggle to communicate started singing along with the songs as soon as the music started, which was a special moment for patients’ relatives and carers. The next cafés are on the 18 July and 23 August in the Eaglestone Function room from 13:30 – 15:00 and the café is for inpatients and their family/carers only. If you’d like more information about the Dementia Café, please contact the Dementia Team on 01908 995095.

We Care You sleep - Night Charter A team of matrons, working alongside senior sisters and charge nurses, have launched a night charter called ‘We Care You Sleep’ to help reduce the amount of noise on the wards at night and improve patients’ sleep.

they thought it was going. The matrons will audit and monitor progress across the hospital over the next few months to ensure the pledges are being adopted and that the sleep of the patients is improved.

The team spent months surveying staff and patients, and collecting pledges from staff who each resolved to make changes to improve the experience of patients at night ahead of the charter’s launch in June.

As well as working with teams on the ward, the matrons have also met with colleagues from Security, Estates and Support Services who have offered their help and support to ensure reducing noise at night becomes everyone’s business.

Senior staff went to all wards and departments every night in the first week of ‘We Care You Sleep’ to show support and be there in person to ask staff how

Ade completes an ultra-marathon! Ade Kadiri our Trust Secretary recently ran an ultra-marathon in South Africa. The Comrades Marathon is the oldest, largest and most famous ultra-marathon in the world. It was started in 1921 by a returning South African veteran of the First World War as a way of commemorating fallen comrades. It has been run each year since then (apart from during the Second World War) between the cities of Durban and Pietermaritzburg in the KwaZulu-Natal region of the country. The race alternates each year between the Up Run (Durban to Pietermaritzburg) and the Down Run in the other direction. The Up Run is roughly 87km and the Down roughly 90km. Ade completed the Down Run last year and completed the Up Run this year. He finished the gruelling run in an impressive 10 hours, 36 minutes and 14 seconds – nothing compared to the amount of time he spends chasing after board papers!

Schwartz Rounds Last year, the hospital began hosting Schwartz Rounds - meetings which provide an opportunity for staff from all disciplines across the organisation to reflect on the emotional aspects of their work. The rounds are always centred around a theme, for instance ‘My best or worst day at work’ or ‘Dealing with emergencies’, and are a safe time in which challenging work experiences can be spoken about, thought about, or sometimes just simply witnessed. Since the first round in January 2016, the hospital has had 13 Schwartz Rounds and three mini rounds in clinical areas, all of which have proved hugely valuable for staff. We’ll be featuring Schwartz Rounds in the next edition, so watch this space.


Site improvements continue Construction work at the hospital has recently been completed on several projects to improve facilities for staff, patients and members of the public.

Our new main entrance opened in May 2017, providing a modern and welcoming main route into the hospital for all visitors to the site.

We are continuing to invest in our site over the coming months to ensure that we are able to provide an even greater level of care to the people of Milton Keynes. Find out more information about all of these projects below.

The new entrance is located New main outside the main outpatients entrance building, opposite the Opened in multi-storey car park. The May 2017 building offers a Costa Coffee shop, a Subway restaurant and a Little Fresh, a convenience store that will offer seasonal products, as well as additional seating areas. Patients and visitors will further benefit from a manned reception desk, a Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) lounge and an Information, Advice and Support Centre provided by Carers Milton Keynes and Age UK Milton Keynes.

Ward 24 Opened in February 2017

A link corridor has been constructed between the main entrance and outpatients, ensuring all future access into the hospital is undercover and connected. All visitors to this side of the site should now enter through the doors to the main entrance and follow the appropriate signage.

In February we opened ward 24, our new 20-bed planned surgery ward. The new ward will be used by patients coming in for planned (elective) surgery. Ward 24 has been built next to our Treatment Centre, with the theatre complex and Ambulatory Care Unit (now named ward 23) close by. The additional clinical space will help to reduce patient waiting times and get patients in and out of hospital quicker while increasing safety and standards of care. To access the ward, you need to enter through the doors to the Treatment Centre and use the adjoining corridor. To support with patient drop-off/pick up, there are now six spaces located outside the ward as well as six disabled bays.

Work is rapidly progressing on the construction of our Academic Centre in partnership with the University of Buckingham.

Academic Centre Opening February 2018

It is located by the roundabout as you enter the site from Standing Way, adjacent to the Urgent Care Centre. Once completed, the new facility will contain a 150+ seater lecture theatre, state-of-the-art simulation suites and modern technology which will allow us to live stream theatre operations to classrooms located inside the centre. The development of this building will enable us to attract and train the doctors and nurses of tomorrow as well as allow us to increase and improve our research trials which are a fundamental part of our strategic development.

Further projects planned

New multi-storey car park

To support with the growing demand on our services, the Trust will be building a new multi-storey car park close to the Cardiology department. Construction is due to begin in October 2017 with the car park scheduled to be open by the end of the year. The Trust is currently looking at building a Cancer Centre that will allow us to provide more complex cancer treatments for our patients here at the hospital, whereas currently they have to travel to Northampton or Oxford.

Cancer Centre

This new facility will include the latest equipment and will enable our staff to provide a greater level of care for patients with cancer in Milton Keynes. Proposed plans aim to complete construction by 2019. We’ll bring you more detail in the coming months.

The Check Up


Summer 2017

Our new staff engagement event proves hugely successful! In May 2017, we launched our biggest ever internal engagement event for staff and volunteers of the hospital, providing them with a platform for sharing ideas and building relationships across the organisation. Over the three days of The Event in the Tent, over 1,000 staff came through the doors to our marquee to get involved in workshops, presentations and even fitness classes!

The three days were themed around three topics; health and wellbeing, achieving excellence and improving staff and patient experience. Following feedback from the annual staff and patient surveys, as well as verbal feedback from staff, we formulated a programme that included all the topics that our staff wanted to talk about. Sessions ranged from formal presentations by international experts

to workshops where staff were able to discuss ideas to improve our current ways of working. Following its success, the Event in the Tent will now become an annual highlight in staff calendars and we hope to have an even bigger and better event next year! To find out more about the event, including some of the photos, please read on.


In any organisation, staff engagement is absolutely critical. If you want to build a successful and outstanding organisation, it starts with the people who work in that establishment. Simon Lloyd Acting Chairman

It shows that the organisation cares about your health by putting on classes that will improve you. Frances Metcalf Outpatients Receptionist

The Check Up


Summer 2017

This is the first time we have done The Event in the Tent. It sends a powerful message to our staff that we unquestionably want to know what’s happening in the organisation, what interests staff and what gets them up in the morning to come and work at MKUH. Matthew Sandham Associate Chief Nurse

It is great to see all the investment in the hospital, for example the building of ward 24. This has been a brilliant opportunity to find out more about how we are developing. Robyn Eastment Staff Nurse on Ward 23

The organisation is now working through all of the feedback received over the three days to put into action some of the suggestions that were raised. Over the next few months, we will be introducing many new initiatives, particularly around health and wellbeing and the patient journey through the hospital, to continue to provide a better experience for both staff and patients of the hospital. Inevitably, some of the suggestions raised will take longer to implement but a project group will be established in the coming weeks to ensure that none of the feedback is lost and we continue to find ways in which we can act upon the ideas. It is hugely important that this event is just the stepping stone to achieving greater things and this can only be done with the support of our staff.


International Nurses’ Day and Day of the Midwife celebration International Nurses Day is celebrated around the world every May 12, the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth. Here at the hospital, we celebrated the day with our second Trust wide Bake-Off competition for all staff to take part. The theme this year was #nurseheroes and we asked our nursing team about their nurse heroes.

International Day of the Midwife is celebrated around the world every May 5 and this year’s theme was Midwives, Mothers and Families: Partners for Life! Our midwives help to deliver nearly 5,000 babies each year at the hospital, playing an intimate and joyous part in a family’s history.

This year our International Nurses’ Day and Day of the Midwife celebrations were bigger and better than ever with Professor Dame Elizabeth Anionwu opening our celebrations on the final day in ‘The Tent’. Dame Elizabeth, who set up the UK’s first sickle cell/thalassaemia nurse counselling service in 1979, came to talk to us about her amazing life story and her illustrious career.

Each and every cake proved popular at the Afternoon Tea and members of staff from all areas of the hospital helped make sure nothing went to waste, tucking in while taking part in a general knowledge quiz.

(Labour ward and ward 10)

The midwives on labour ward were excellent and ward 10 midwives couldn’t have been more caring.

1st 1st - Hannah Coleman Practice Development 2nd - Karen Hillman Dermatology

There were also various sessions throughout the morning including the launch of our night charter We Care You Sleep and a careers Q&A panel with members of senior staff and staff in speciality roles. The afternoon saw our second Trust-wide bake off and this year we even had a tent! There were lots of amazing cakes submitted and the judges had a hard time choosing the top three.

What our patients say:

3rd – Sarah Murrell Outpatients Department



The Check Up


Summer 2017

A quick cuppa with... Simon Lloyd Acting Chairman

Simon Lloyd has been actively involved with the hospital for over two years as a non-executive director and deputy chairman and at the beginning of the year he stepped in as acting chairman following the sad death of Baroness Margaret Wall. Originally qualified as a solicitor, Simon spent some of his early career working in a private practice as a corporate lawyer, before joining Lloyds Bank. In the following years Simon continued to work within the financial services sector in a number of roles including having responsibility for human resources for the Alliance & Leicester and Santander. You are fairly new to MKUH so what have your initial impressions of the hospital? I have experienced MKUH as both a member of staff and as a service user and the thing that has struck me more than anything is simply how friendly everyone working here is. It doesn’t seem to matter how busy someone is they have always been happy to stop and help where they can. Teams across the hospital run their areas tremendously well and it’s an honour to work with so many people who care passionately about what they do.

How do you see your role here? That’s an interesting question because I see my role as a number of different things. I think firstly it is as an ambassador and advocate for the hospital and the services that we provide here. Another clear responsibility is to chair our board meetings and help set the Trust’s strategic direction. My third key role is to ensure that we have an appropriate approach to governance and risk and this is where I believe my years of experience in financial services is valuable. It is crucially important that we manage not only clinical risk to ensure patient safety but also financial risk appropriately and strategically to ensure that tax payer’s money is spent wisely. How different is working at a hospital to your previous roles? The hospital is very different to the financial sector and my role is to support and influence but not manage. However, what each organisation has is people and it doesn’t matter if they are a bank clerk or a nurse, the organisation need to engage people in exactly the same.

I spent a number of years managing human resources and finding different ways to engage staff in changing environments presents the same issues and challenges. Away from work, what do you like to do to keep yourself busy? I am not really someone who can do nothing. I have always enjoyed sports that involve a ball and continue to be an active hockey player as well as a golfer. I also enjoy watching sports as much as actively play them but if I’m not doing that you will find me indulging in my other passion which is reading. I am currently reading Peter James’ crime thriller ‘Love you Dead’ which I am thoroughly enjoying but I’m also an avid history reader. What is top of your bucket list? I am not sure I have a bucket list as I have been fortunate enough to have been able to experience many great things. That said I would still like to climb Ben Nevis before I get too old to do it!


“Being nominated for the award was a very proud moment for me and the volunteers and trustees who have worked so hard to raise the awareness. We are thrilled to have this recognition and what it represents” Maureen Peskett, Senior Sister

Milton Keynes support group receive award from the Queen! In 2005, a number of former intensive care patients and relatives in Milton Keynes were brought together to find ways in which their after-care could be better supported to help them on their road to recovery. Behind this venture was one of the hospital’s Senior Sisters, Maureen Peskett and former patient Peter Gibb who together founded the Intensive Care Patient and Relative Support Group – now known as ICUsteps. From its humble beginnings as a six weekly meeting taking place on a Thursday, there are now 20 support groups set up throughout the country and the advice provided in their adult information booklets is now used as a first reference point in over 65% of all intensive care units in the country. However the core group established by Maureen and Peter is still going strong with patients continuing to meet every six weeks on a Thursday at Age UK Milton Keynes in Peartree Bridge. And recently they received a Royal thumbs up for all their hard work. In May 2017, ICUsteps was awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS) following a nomination from a former patient. It was a fantastic achievement for everyone involved in the organisation and is

Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines for acutely ill patients in hospital (CG50) and critical illness rehabilitation (CG83).

testament to the dedication the team put in day in, day out. “There are often long term physical and psychological consequences of being a patient in intensive care,” explained Maureen. “Having set up and run the nurse-led followup service for the Department of Critical Care in 2001 I soon began to realise that there was more that needed to be done to support patients and relatives through their recovery journey. ICUsteps was formed based on the need to raise this awareness and provide a secure safe place for patients and relatives to come and talk to people who had shared the same experiences.” ICUsteps has seen a significant growth in membership, not only locally and nationally but even internationally! As well as holding regular drop-in sessions and encouraging other groups to form, former patients, their relatives and trustees have participated in the development of National Institute for

They have also presented to medical conferences up and down the country and have written a paper entitled ‘Developing and setting up a patient and relatives intensive care support group’ which was published in the Nursing in Critical Care Journal in January 2009. All of this work is done on a voluntary basis. ICUsteps is a registered charity and all donations help to improve the support provided to intensive care patients and their relatives. Both Maureen and Peter recently attended the Queens garden party and are now awaiting a date to receive their award and crystal from the Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire. “Being nominated for the award was a very proud moment for me and the volunteers and trustees who have worked so hard to raise the awareness,” Maureen said “We are thrilled to have this recognition and what it represents.”

If you would like to contact or find out more about the work that ICUsteps does, visit

The Check Up


Summer 2017

Red2Green are this season’s colours

Following one of the most talked-about sessions at The Event in the Tent, we are launching a new initiative in July which will cut down the amount of patient’s time that is wasted during their journey from being admitted, treated and sent home from hospital – Red2Green. Red2Green is a visual management system to help staff understand quickly where time is being wasted in a patient’s journey. At their three-daily meetings, ward staff discuss the care of each patient and with the launch of Red2Green, they will be given red and green magnets to put against a patient’s name as a visual aid to check that the patient’s time on the ward is being used effectively. A RED day is classed as one in which the patient is no closer to going home than they were the day before and their time that day has been wasted. Every patient starts the day on red with the magnet working as a visual reminder that the teams need to work together to progress them to a green day. A GREEN day is one where action is taken - this can range from the treatment itself to simply setting or updating an estimated discharge date - to get the patient safely back home more quickly. The initiative has already had successful pilots on our Wards 3 and 18, and will now be introduced gradually over the summer months to all other appropriate wards. The visual magnet comes in the form of Flo, our friendly female patient who will help to promote quick, efficient and effective patient flow through the hospital and the wards involved will display red and green doors to show that they are implementing Red2Green This positive change is supported by a number of other projects that look at how the patient’s experience at the hospital can be improved and together with the launch of Red2Green, the hospital is also taking part in the national campaign to #EndPJparalysis.

What is #EndPJparalysis? The campaign encourages patients in hospital, where possible, to stop wearing pyjamas or a hospital gown when they don’t need to. A patient in pyjamas is less likely to want to get out of bed and move around, and we know that a prolonged period of bedrest can seriously affect muscle strength and some patients’ ability to carry out every day tasks. We also know that it can affect the mind-set of the patient, reinforcing the image that they are sick. To help combat that here at the hospital we will be encouraging patients and their families to bring in clothes to enable their relative to get up and get dressed if they are well enough to do so. This will mean that patients can get back into their normal routine, under the watchful eye of our staff, enabling them to recover quicker, help them gain their independence back and most importantly get home sooner. We will bring you updates on how Red2Green and #EndPJparalysis are helping to improve the lives of patients in the coming months.

“A patient’s time is the greatest currency in healthcare” Professor Brian Dolan

Welcome to Staff Health and Wellbeing This year our Occupational Health team were renamed the Staff Health and Wellbeing department to reflect the organisation’s ambition to improve staff access to health facilities and clubs. March 2017 saw the official launch of the service, outlining our plans to introduce initiatives such as walking clubs, fitness classes and mindfulness sessions. Feedback from staff has been overwhelmingly supportive with many really keen to get involved with helping to run classes and promote the schemes. This led to the introduction of staff health and wellbeing champions who are responsible for raising awareness of health initiatives across their teams and departments. So far we have 10 champions who are working really well in supporting the current plans as well as formulating future ideas for how we can make access for staff easier and more convenient. Some of the activities that have already launched include a selfreferral physiotherapy service, a dietary advice workshop and a walking club. Head of the department Liz Watson is delighted with how the programme is developing: “It has been brilliant to see how staff have really engaged with the launch of the new service. I think what is clear to see is that this is something that staff want – a service whereby they can have a range of different classes available to suit all their health and wellbeing needs. It also provides a great opportunity to bring staff together from across the organisation which typically they may never get to do. “We are always looking for more champions to help promote the services so please get in touch if this is something you would like to support. Likewise if anyone has any ideas for new health and wellbeing activities, we would love to hear from you!” You can contact the department on or 01908 995255.

The Check Up


Summer 2017

Hello from Milton Keynes Hospital Charity After a phenomenal start to the year with some fantastic events and fundraising from groups such as the MK Classic Car Rally, Celestra and Shenley Church End Parish Council, we are delighted to share some of our news below.

Redway Runners announce Charity of the Year partnership The Redway Runners have announced us as their new Charity of the Year. Milton Keynes Hospital Charity was nominated by club member Mike Webber and was chosen over a number of other local and national charities that had been nominated by members. Mike Webber describes why he nominated Milton Keynes Hospital Charity: “Back in December 2016, I was rushed to Milton Keynes Hospital with severe stomach pains. After undergoing an immediate five hour operation, my wife and I were given the devastating news that I had inoperable stage 4 bowel cancer that had spread to the liver. “Since diagnosis, I have been treated in the most caring and supportive way by all members of staff in the Cancer Services Unit at Milton Keynes Hospital.

“These include the oncologist, the oncology nurses, the colorectal nurses and the Macmillan staff. It’s difficult to put into words how a diagnosis such as this can make you feel... it is very daunting. However, I’m made to feel at ease by the oncology nurses during my fortnightly visit for chemotherapy. They laugh, they joke, they comfort and generally make you feel at ease. “This led me to nominate Milton Keynes Hospital Charity as the Redway Runners charity for 2017-18, and all the money we raise will help cancer services staff care for others that are going through tough times with cancer.” We are so honoured and excited to be working with such a committed and passionate group of people. All the money raised will help us to help patients like Mike, their families and the staff who treat them at Milton Keynes University Hospital.


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Joules Sale

Come along to the charity’s first Joules seconds and return sale at Unit 9 Studios in Wolverton on Wednesday 9 August. There will be a fantastic selection of ladies, men’s, children’s and home wear on offer at up to 70% off RRP price! Tickets can be bought in advance from for £4.00 and will be permitted entry at 6.00pm. Tickets are £5.00 on the door for 6.30pm entry. All items can be purchased on the night by cash or credit card/debit card. For further details please e-mail or call 01908 996220. We look forward to seeing you there!

To keep up to date with our events and fundraising check out our Facebook page: www.facebookcom/mkhcharity

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Sorry, I don’t follow you!

Sudoku – How to play The rules are simple. Each row, column and square (9 spaces each) needs to be filled out with the numbers 1-9, without repeating any numbers within the row, column or square. Some squares are already filled in so you just need to do the rest!

The Check Up Summer 2017  

The latest edition of Milton Keynes University Hospital's newspaper.

The Check Up Summer 2017  

The latest edition of Milton Keynes University Hospital's newspaper.