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June 2011

RD&Express The newsletter for members of the Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust

Exeter Lions Club volunteers are making it easier for Royal Devon & Exeter hospital patients to return NHS crutches, walking sticks and frames. The charity volunteers are collecting the returned equipment from local GP surgeries and community hospitals across East, Mid and West Devon. At the RD&E, our Physiotherapy and Emergency Departments issue each year 2,692 pairs of crutches, over 1,000 walking frames and almost 900 sticks. The annual cost of this equipment is just under £60,000. Fellow Lion Angie Whawell came up with the idea of ‘letting the Lions do the legwork’ after breaking her ankle and experiencing first hand, as a former RD&E patient, the practical obstacles and disincentives in rural Devon which makes it difficult to get the walking aids returned to the hospital. Angie of Crediton said: “When you have had a nasty break it knocks your confidence and although you are on the mend, part of you thinks you should hold on to the crutches just in case you have a setback. For many people living in outlying towns and villages, making a trip back to the RD&E to return the crutches is not always so easy. I would imagine there are hundreds of crutches, sticks and frames out there and they belong back at the hospital so we hope by making it easier for people to drop these items off at their local GP surgery or community hospital, then the Lions can collect and return them to the RD&E.”

Inside I Update on RD&E savings programme page 3 I Behind the scenes – using blood wisely page 5 I Events & Members’ Say pages 6-11



The RD&E laundry and linen service has beaten off stiff competition to enter a national framework agreement allowing it to generate further income for the Trust which can be used towards improving patient experience. The Trust was the highest ranked of the seven NHS laundry providers who submitted applications for the agreement due to ‘its competence, professionalism and ability to provide the available services in an efficient and cost effective manner.’

RD&E Staff Nurse Brenda Somerfield is the national winner of the Nursing Standard’s Claire Rayner Patient’s Choice Award. Brenda, who works on Mere ward, is pictured with Mr Gerard Noel, who nominated her for this award after she cared for his late wife Caroline, during her terminal illness. Over 200 nominations were received for this accolade and a public vote determined the overall winner. Children with Cystic Fibrosis (CF) at the RD&E are receiving some of the best care in the country according to statistics published in a recent report by the UK Cystic Fibrosis Trust. The report findings suggest that high healthcare test scores for CF patients, such as their BMI (Body Mass Index) and FEV (Forced Expiratory Volume), reflects better patient health achieved from specialist hospital treatment, care and support. The RD&E achieved the top score for BMI and came eighth for FEV out of the 26 specialist CF centres evaluated. Consultant Paediatrician Dr Patrick Oades said: “We are very proud of our results. Our multi-disciplinary team work extremely hard to provide the highest quality care for our young patients, to give them the best chance to live normal lives for as long as possible.”

Fit For The Future

The focus, commitment and innovation of our staff has achieved the full £18.3 million savings in the RD&E’s Fit For The Future programme for the last financial year. What is particularly encouraging is that colleagues not only reduced costs and spending but improved patient care and services by changing our ways of working and using resources more effectively. An example of patient experience and clinical service improvement, which has also reduced costs to the NHS, is the successful Early Stroke Discharge Support Scheme. Patients return home with the same quality and level of specialist care and support they would have received had they stayed on the hospital ward but the familiar surroundings of their own home is beneficial to their recovery. This approach has received positive feedback from patients, and their carers and families. Our business planning is based on the expectation of reduced activity for acute hospitals coming from the commissioner, NHS Devon; reduction in the tariff price for what we do and other wider changes to the national NHS pricing system. Examples of changes with financial impact on the RD&E are non-payment for treatment of patients readmitted

to hospital within 28 days of having been discharged and financial penalties for breaching national single sex accommodation standards.


surgical research unit and the extension of Exeter Oncology Centre. Sixteen million pounds over the next year will be invested in our buildings, upgrading of equipment and Invest To Save initiatives to benefit patient care now and in the future. Angela Pedder Chief Executive

Our FFTF strategy will continue to be the re-design of patient care pathways and services by working collaboratively with local GP and community healthcare services so that we can all offer the most effective care first time in the right place with minimal delay. Financial prudence though does not mean that we stand still in terms of innovation and service development. Recent examples of Trust investment and commitment to research and development include the opening of the new A new Surgical Health Services Research Unit has been opened at the RD&E – bringing together the resources, experience and knowledge to inform real advances in all stages of surgical treatment and improve patient care. The Unit, which been funded through collaboration between the Directorates of Surgery and Research and Development, will enable the Trust to build on its existing strong reputation in the field of research. The main aim is to improve patient care, especially in surgery, by promoting health services research, innovation and education. It will support the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) research portfolios, as well as building strong links between the Trust and local research partners.



Value of Volunteering

Why volunteer?

volunteering –do it! Not only will

Over 400 volunteers give up their

I Charlotte Payne, Ward visitor

you be helping someone else but

time to support the RD&E by

for Chaplaincy: “Even if it is just

carrying out a wide range of duties

one person that you might help

to improve patient experience and

when visiting a ward then it is



worthwhile. I am always surprised

nursing staff to focus on providing

by how open and honest people are

patient care.

with me – it is such an honour.”



you will also meet wonderful people.





volunteer in what they enjoy doing, and use all their skills. Even if you can only offer an hour a week it will mean something to someone.”

Typical examples of voluntary duties include running errands for patients, tending the gardens at FORCE,



helping at Trust Membership events and meeting, greeting and giving directions to visitors. The


has with

Wendy Wilson, volunteer at

FORCE Cancer Charity: “I started volunteering following my own experience of support from FORCE. I felt I would love to give something back and it is very

Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer should contact Jackie Perry,




Thursday or Friday on 01392 406058.

rewarding.” independent

volunteers and also works in partnership



voluntary organisations, including the WRVS, FORCE, St John’s Ambulance; and Hospital Radio. We also have internal branches of the League of Friends and The Comforts Fund, primarily working in the orthopaedic hospital.


The RD&E celebrated Volunteer Reuben



Chairman of League of Friends: “I was born in the hospital many years ago so I have an emotional attachment. We are always so grateful that people want to give donations to be used within the hospital.” I

Amanda Whitlock, Service to



information stalls and displays raising




hospital about the volunteer opportunities available and the fantastic


volunteers make to the quality of our patient and visitor

Delivery Manager, WRVS: “ I would say





Behind the scenes


The Royal Devon & Exeter hospital has led the way in developing ways to significantly reduce the need to use precious donated blood stocks. The RD&E will always need blood donated to NHS Blood & Transplant service to provide life-saving treatment for major emergency trauma patients and other medical problems which can involve severe bleeding. Most trauma patients are seriously injured in accidents. There may also be complications in childbirth which require replacement blood. In addition, repeat blood transfusion patients treated at the Exeter Oncology Centre have similar requirements because chemotherapy for cancer affects the bone marrow which produces blood cells. RD&E Blood Transfusion Laboratory Manager James Piper, pictured, said: “Over the last five years the RD&E has used 122,000 units of donated blood, on more than 20,000 patients, saving thousands of lives. We are committed to using blood stocks wisely and we have seen a steady decline in the amount of blood we need to draw on from NHS Blood & Transplant Service because of the work which has been developed at the Royal

Devon & Exeter to prevent the need for blood transfusion wherever practical and, wherever clinically appropriate, for the patient to have their own blood during surgery. The cost difference between donated blood from a stranger for a transfusion, which is currently £124.85 per unit (400 mils) and Blood Recycling, using specialist technology, is pretty much the same but there are benefits to patients for their recovery if they can have their own blood.” Clinical lead for Blood Conservation and Consultant Vascular Surgeon Mr John Thompson said: “All patients clinically assessed as suitable who come in to the RD&E for their planned surgery receive their own blood, which would otherwise have been lost during surgery. The rare exceptions are when it is clinically assessed as not being appropriate or for emergency transfusions in some medical conditions.

“We have long recognised at the RD&E how precious blood is and we are playing our part in ensuring that we are not complacent in using donated blood stocks. The bottom line though is we always need donor blood – lives depend on it.” The




Committee launched a campaign recently with the Express & Echo newspaper to raise awareness about organ donation. To find out more and to join the NHS Organ Donor Register

✔ Call 0300 123 23 23 ✔ Go to

✔ Text SAVE to 84118 If you register please give the marketing code for this campaign ECHO so that we can evaluate the interest




generated. We have no access to your confidential information on this register.


Having your say

Events for Members Council of Governors Meeting

Elections to the Council of Governors 2011 Nominations for the elections this year closed on 18 May and the following members have been elected uncontested:

Wednesday 13 July 2011, 2pm-4.30pm Venue: FlyBe Suite, St James Centre, Exeter City Football Club, Stadium Way, Exeter EX4 6PX

Public constituency – Mid, North, West Devon & Cornwall Cynthia Thornton, re-elected for a further term of three years Andrew Green, elected for a term of one year Staff: Allied Health Professionals Tony Cox, re-elected for a further term of three years Staff: Nurses & Midwives

If you have any queries about

Alison Wootton, elected for a term of three years

our meetings and events, please

Remember to vote!

contact Bernadette Coates in the Foundation Trust Office on 01392 403977.

Voting will take place in the East Devon, Dorset & Somerset and the Exeter & South Devon constituencies during June.

Voting papers will

have gone out to Members in these constituencies on 8 June and everyone must return their postal vote by 28 June, with election results declared on 30 June. The Council of Governors is accountable to the local community and the Trust Members and the opportunity to vote for your representatives on the Council of Governors is a vital part of ensuring your views about the Trust are heard.


Recruit a friend We are always looking to recruit new Members to the Foundation Trust. If you have a friend, colleague or family member who you think might like to become a Member please fill in this coupon and send it back to us at: Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust FREEPOST NAT7092 Exeter EX2 5BF Or email their details to If they have an email address, let us know that too as we can then send them details of how to join up on-line.

Please send details of how to become a Foundation Trust Member to: Name: .......................................... Address: ........................................ .................................................. .................................................. Email address: ..................................................

Having your say

News from the Council of Governors meeting on 13 April 2011


performance. Governors were told about



significant in


Constitution – there had been a

Health & Social Care Bill – the

since the end of the 3rd quarter.

delay, at Monitor, our regulator, in

Governors were provided with a

Particular issues noted included

its approval of the Trust’s new

briefing on the latest developments

the new testing methodology for

Constitution, therefore the Trust

on the passage of the Bill.

Clostridium difficile; an overview

2011/12 PCT Contract: Governors

of complaints and commendations

were given an overview of the

and details about performance on

Annual Report – work was now

interim contract with the Primary

VTE (venous thromboembolism).

underway on this year’s Annual

Care Trust.

continues to operate on the existing Constitution.


It would be in a very

similar format to last year’s and will contain the Quality Report. It will be formally received by Governors at their Annual Members

Governance Performance:

The Governors

received an overview of the Trust’s performance for the third quarter of the previous financial year and Monitor’s comments on the RD&E’s

Meeting in the autumn. Quality Report: Governors agreed



Governors were updated on the background and outcomes of a Trust-wide Governance Review and how they would be able to contribute to the new approach.

their priorities for improvement in

How to get to the RD&E

the next RD&E Quality Account/

Visitors to the RD&E are encouraged to use our dedicated Park &


Ride service. It runs to Wonford Hospital from Digby (near Tesco and junction 30 of the M5) every 10 minutes, Monday to Friday

Do we have your email address?

(excluding Bank Holidays) and costs £1.30 return.

If we can send more of our

The Park & Ride service has now been extended so that some of the

newsletters out to you by email

buses will also serve the Heavitree Hospital site.

then we save money on printing and postage and you get your

The buses to

Heavitree start at 7am at Digby with the last bus leaving Heavitree at 5.30pm. Stagecoach bus service H runs to Wonford Hospital every fifteen

newsletter sooner.

minutes or so from the High Street in the city centre. It also services Let us know your email address

the Broadfields area of Exeter to the RD&E.

and we will ensure you are then sent




Sign up to this

new service by emailing us at

Buses from Exmouth, Dawlish, Torbay, Teignmouth, Plymouth, Crediton and Seaton stop next to the hospital on Barrack Road. Details of timetables can be obtained from the hospital or on our website at


Members’ Say event

Well over 220 members attended our latest Members’ Say event at the end of March. Those who attended were able to attend talks about stroke care and

The answer is: 1,200 miles or the

“Thank you all for

equivalent of travelling by car

dermatology, browse the stalls

putting together such

between Exeter and London and

covering a variety of different

a very interesting

back again three times.

issues such as infection control,

and informative day”

child and women’s health and respiratory problems, and take part in a number of different activities




members a chance to have their say. The event was also attended by a number of the Trust’s Governors and Directors.

been very positive - nine out of ten people who filled in the evaluation felt



work in difficult times!” Members were invited to give their views on a number of different issues:

The feedback from the event has


“Keep up the good


worthwhile. As with all events like this, we aim to continue to improve based on the feedback we

Environment I Members




estimate how far you could travel in a Ford Mondeo to emit the level




equivalent to the average carbon cost of an inpatient in hospital.

receive so for the event we are planning for October we will be





providing even more opportunities

ranging from 25 miles to 25,000

for members to have their say in

miles with the average of 5,100

focus group discussions.


Members’ Say event

I Members were also asked to



say which country has the same carbon emissions as the whole of

Members were asked their views about possible changes to our

the NHS.

smoking policy. By and large those The answer is Portugal – both

who responded preferred the idea

produce around 21 million tonnes

of establishing smoking shelters

of CO2 annually.

although this was closely followed

I Members were asked how

by providing additional support for helping people give up smoking.

many miles the Trust’s fleet of laundry trucks travels every year.

These views have been taken into account in the revision of our

Answers ranged from 5,200 miles to




smoking policy.


average of 386,000 miles. The answer is: 216,000 miles a year. The NHS accounts for 25% of public sector emissions in the UK. So reducing




footprint will make a big dent in the UK’s carbon footprint. The RD&E along with the rest of the NHS is committed to reducing its carbon footprint. The Trust aims to meet the NHS target of reducing its 2007 carbon emissions by 10% by 2015.

10 Members’ Say event Priorities Members were asked to identify their priorities by spending fake money. The priorities identified were: Priority

How much?

% of total money spent

Time spent whilst waiting at the hospital



Cleanliness of the hospital



Time between being referred by GP and being seen by hospital doctor



Reducing hospital infections



Being treated with respect



Being informed



Total spent


At the November 2010 members’ Say event the figures showed a similar pattern but on some areas were noticeably different: Priority

How much?

% of total money spent

Time spent whilst waiting at the hospital



Cleanliness of the hospital



Time between being referred by GP



Reducing hospital infections



Being treated with respect



Being informed



and being seen by hospital doctor

Total spent


These priorities will be regularly asked at these events to see how they vary over time.

Members’ Say event 11

Focus groups

Focus groups

The focus groups looked at issues

The focus groups looked at the



RD&E brand. The Board is keen to

experience and the RD&E brand.

understand what our members


think about the Trust and the







extent to which they recognise and

underpin choice, the role of the

value our brand. The majority view



compared the RD&E to Waitrose or

private and public healthcare

M&S with one particular attendee

providers, what more could be

suggesting the Trust was most like


British Rail.









experience from referral through to discharge, and some of the specific issues people faced as patients in navigating their way through the NHS system and bureaucracy. These focus groups are helping the Board and Governors consider what changes might be made to the Trust’s strategy and plans to make sure it is offering the very best healthcare in a way that strives hard to meet patient expectations.

12 Other news The artistic talent of our young patients from Bramble school has turned heads with their hand decorated sheep joining a flock to launch the reopening of Cathedral Green in Exeter city centre recently. Twenty two Bramble school pupils adopted styles of painting from famous artists to create the eye catching artwork. Pictured: teacher Jo Forrest and teaching assistant Vanessa Fortune, with the Bramble sheep, decorated in the styles of Matisse and Klimt.

The Royal Devon & Exeter Wonford hospital ‘performs well’ in the latest Which? hospital car park research. Using information obtained from 138 Freedom of Information responses, Which? identified the best and worst NHS hospital car parks in England. The RD&E is ranked in the top (green) third of the Which? league table against the following main judging criteria: I Support for priority patients I charging and payment options I talking to patients & visitors Which? says the RD&E Wonford hospital car park is ‘serving its users well on these priorities.’ Trust Chief Operating Officer Elaine Hobson said: “Recently we introduced a facility for patients and

visitors to have the initial 20 minutes parking free of charge. Income from pay and display parking charges funds alternative travel options including £260,000 a year for the dedicated hospital park and ride bus service. Over 250 people a day take up the return journey on the park and ride which only costs £1.30 and for staff there is a Salary Sacrifice discount on this service. As a major employer the Trust also contributes £53,000 a year to an initiative which gives staff commuters a third off their Stagecoach bus travel. The RD&E also has award winning facilities for cyclists and 600 members of staff have to date made tax free purchases of bicycles from local businesses through a salary sacrifice scheme. Free parking is provided to patients, who require regular attendance at the Wonford and Heavitree hospital sites for treatment, and to disabled badge holders.”

need to

The Foundation Trust membership office can be contacted by telephoning 01392 403977, by emailing or by writing to: RD&E NHS Foundation Trust Office, Room E219, RD&E Hospital, Barrack Road, Exeter, EX2 5DW. For more information about the Foundation Trust visit the RD&E website:

We can arrange language translation if you do not speak English. We can arrange British Sign Language interpretation, and also give you this information in larger text. Please ask us on (01392) 403977.

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RD&E Express June 2011  

RD&E Express June 2011

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