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A word from our Chairman, Pradip Patel 

Hello and welcome to our latest members’ newsletter. I hope you are safe and well.

As you’ll be aware, the NHS is under immense pressure nationally and Frimley Health is no exception – especially our two emergency departments where we see anything from 700 to 800 patients every single day. As we aim to see patients with urgent needs as quickly as we can, this often means that those with non-urgent clinical needs, can often longer to be taken care of.

We know that we have to create ‘flow’ through our hospitals, i.e. discharge patients who are well enough to free up beds for those who need them, so that we can reduce these waits, improve patient experience and create space for our sickest patients. This is even more important as we head into our busiest time of the year.

That’s why we’re working with colleagues from across the Trust and our primary and social care partners (as part of the Frimley Integrated Care System) to look at ways to support patients and the public across our community.

One of the simplest ways that you can help us is to make sure that you are choosing the right service for your needs. Please see our infographic later in this newsletter for guidance.

Can I please also encourage you to get your annual Flu jab and the Covid booster jab? These will help to protect you and your family this winter.

I hope you will enjoy reading about some of the things we are doing to improve our services for our patients. Please let Sarah Waldron have any feedback on this newsletter so that we can make sure that future issues meet your needs better.

Faster diagnosis for breast care patients

Surrey-based cancer charity KatCanDo visited Frimley Park Hospital earlier this month week to see the portable breast scanning equipment purchased thanks to their incredible fundraising efforts.

Consultant breast surgeon Hisham Osman said: “This scanner allows us to rapidly assess symptomatic lumps. This assessment means we can reassure the majority of patients of the benign nature of a lump, faster, which is of course very positive.

“The scanner will also be used in the rapid assessment of emergency patients presenting with infection, allowing us to differentiate between cellulitis and abscesses. Abscesses can then be drained under ultrasound guidance using the scanner. And it will help in theatres with more accurate targeting of lumps in lumpectomies. It really is a very versatile piece of equipment that KatCanDo have kindly gifted us.”

Frimley Health Charity marketing and communications manager Hannah Trenoweth said: “We can’t thank KatCanDo enough for all they have done. This scanner will make such a difference to so many patients’ lives. KatCanDo have fundraised over £150,000 for Frimley Health Charity, an incredible achievement for which we are extremely grateful.”

A timely trial for Wexham’s dementia patients

Dementia teamPersonalised dementia reminder clocks are being trialled for patients with dementia in Wexham Park hospital’s Wards 7, 8, 17 and the Acute Frailty Unit to help improve the patient experience.

Clinical Matron, Carlito Mejia, explained: “Being orientated to time can help prevent confusion in patients with dementia. Each clock can be personalised with family members able to upload family pictures or even a favourite film, but their basic function is to remind a patient not only of the time but what day of the week and month it is and whether it’s morning or afternoon or evening.

“We can also set alarms to remind patients to hydrate or to take their medication. This allows them to remain organised and feel in control of their daily activities, which helps them to keep routines on track, reducing anxiety and agitation.”

The cost of the trial is being met by the ward. However, Frimley Health Charity is currently running a major appeal to help all the 3,500 patients with dementia who are treated across our hospitals each year and to make spaces as dementia friendly as they can be.

Extensive refurbishment to transform cath labs

cath labFrimley Park Hospital has taken delivery of a mobile catheter laboratory (cath lab) in preparation for an extensive £2m modernisation programme due to begin next month. The refurbishment will allow more electrophysiological work, where we test for abnormal heartbeats and arrythmia, to be carried out locally rather than patients having to travel to tertiary centres in London.

We have two cath labs at Frimley Park: dedicated areas used for the investigation and treatment of cardiac conditions.

The mobile facility, located behind the cardiology wards, is a fully functioning drop-in unit where the same tests and procedures can be carried out while the refurbishment takes place.

The refurbished labs will be modernised with a state-of-the-art room specification, featuring the latest equipment, including conference facilities that will allow the team to stream live sessions and run educational courses for other organisations around the world. The refurbishment programme will take around 12 weeks to complete for each lab.

Rob Cheeseman, cross site project lead for cardiac cath labs and clinical investigations said: “Following on from the recent upgrade of the cath labs at Wexham Park Hospital, this is an important investment for Frimley Health that will bring the latest technology and equipment to increase our scope of electrophysiological work and improve care for our patients.“

Royal tree celebrations

Tree plantingAs part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations, 300 organisations across the UK were chosen to receive a special tree in The Queen’s name. We were delighted to be one of the organisations selected and earlier this month we planted the tree from The Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC).

Presented by Michael More-Molyneux, Lord Lieutenant of Surrey, the tree was planted opposite a beautiful garden at Frimley Park Hospital which is frequently used by patients and staff. An informal event was held to mark the planting, with Consultant Nurse, Suman Shrestha, and Queen’s Nurse, Kelly Gray, attending to represent the 12,000 staff across our Trust.

The gift of the tree recognises the “valuable and tireless efforts of our staff and volunteers” and becomes part of the living legacy in honour of Her Majesty.

Neil Dardis, Chief Executive, said: “We are delighted to be chosen as one of the organisations across the UK to receive a lasting legacy honouring Her Majesty The Queen’s extraordinary service to both her country and her people. The gift of the tree also recognises the valuable and tireless efforts of our staff which is a fantastic tribute to their hard work and dedication during the challenges of the last few years.”

Our council of governors is made up of local people who have the important job of holding the trust’s board of directors to account. They represent the interests of patients, the local community and trust members.

Elections are held to appoint our governors, who have either been nominated or put themselves forward for the role. Above are your most recently elected governors. Their contact details are available on our website.


A fond farewell and a warm welcome

GovernorsAt the end of October we said farewell to our Lead Governor, Rod Broad as his term with us has come to an end.

Rod has carried out his role as Governor and Lead Governor with absolute professionalism. He is an exceptionally smart and intelligent man who has brought to the Council of Governors sound knowledge and experiences acquired during his business life. A good example of this was how Rod got beneath the numbers in the finance report and constructively challenged our Director of Finance Nigel Foster.

His understanding of data was soon picked up by the system leaders in the north of the patch and he was very much respected as chair of their Analytical Group.

Rod is very well thought of in his local community, and still works with the local leaders on the Older Person's Action Forum. He also has significant involvement in his church especially its governance and finances.

He has been a great advocate for the Trust and has helped to raise our profile, for example by showcasing at external events such as the NHS Providers Governor Conferences.

Taking over from Rod is Sarah Peacey, who has been a Governor with the Trust for several years and is chair of our Patient Experience Group. Look out for next month’s newsletter where we will share a little more about Sarah with you.

I would like to express my sincere thanks to Rod - I have personally enjoyed working in partnership with him as our Lead Governor and the biggest compliment I can pay him is that I will miss him.

I hope Rod will continue to be involved with the Trust and indeed our ICS in some way going forward.

Pradip Patel

Beautiful Parkside is back

The long stay part of Parkside private patients’ suite at Frimley Park Hospital has reopened following a two-week closure and refurbishment. Parkside has two wards, a 26-bed long stay and 13-bed short stay ward, however throughout the pandemic private activity was stopped and the space was used for Covid patients.

While private patient care resumed in the short stay area in June 2021, until last week, long stay had been kept for NHS respiratory and Medical Acute Dependency Unit (MADU) patients.

The refurbishment has refreshed the comfortable and spacious single rooms to help patients recover after surgery. One of the first patients in the reopened unit was William Southgate, 92, from Bracknell, who described the suite as “beautiful - bigger than I expected, and very light and spacious.”

He said: “The staff have been so helpful and their smiley faces have taken away some of the anxiousness.”

Parkside manager Emma Aherne said: “We are delighted to be back. For several years we have been a leading NHS trust provider of private patient services and we have maintained our position of being the number one private patient provider outside of London.”

All profits from the Parkside suite are reinvested into Frimley Health’s NHS services.

Lest we forget – Frimley Health supports Armistice Day

Military colleagues at remembrance paradeOn Armistice Day, 11 November, Frimley Health staff attended a range of remembrance events held across our acute hospitals. The chaplaincy team held services for public and staff in the reception areas at Wexham Park and Heatherwood Hospitals. At Frimley Park, where more than 200 military staff are based, colleagues stood shoulder to shoulder for a remembrance service at the Cadet Training Centre next to the hospital.

We also had the support of local schools with children from The Grove and Frimley CofE schools sending in artwork for military staff based at the hospital. The Remembrance-themed artwork, which was part of the children’s Second World War studies, was displayed at the entrance of Frimley Park Hospital to acknowledge the sacrifices made by the armed forces.


Get boosted this winter

The national Covid autumn booster and flu vaccination programme launched last month and thousands of people across our communities have taken the opportunity to have their free vaccines. If you are 50 and over and haven’t yet been boosted, there is still time to get your vaccine before the peak of the winter virus season.

Covid and flu hospitalisations have risen in recent weeks and with the threat of a so-called ‘twindemic’, having the vaccines offers the best protection against these viruses and will help to keep ourselves, our families and our local communities safe.

You can book your flu vaccination either through your GP practice or by visiting one of several community pharmacies offering this service. For a full list of pharmacies offering the free flu vaccination, please visit the website. To get a seasonal Covid booster dose you can book a Covid-19 vaccination appointment online for a vaccination centre or pharmacy or find a walk-in Covid-19 vaccination site to get vaccinated without needing an appointment.

Get boosted

Frimley Health Charity’s Golden Christmas Appeal

They say Christmas is a time for giving and showing love to those around you and what better way to demonstrate your generosity than by supporting your local hospital? Last year our Golden Christmas Appeal managed to raise over £30,000 and every penny was used to support our hardworking NHS staff and patients.

Christmas is a time for spending with family and friends. A day when people want to be at home surrounded by their loved ones and not in hospital. That is why we want to bring some festive cheer and give all our patients and staff a truly golden Christmas.

Please help us spread comfort and joy to the people we care for and who care for us.

£25 - This will help us pay for 5 staff meals over the Christmas period.
£50 - This ensures presents for patients who are staying in on Christmas Day.
£75 - This would fund the ICU team going for their Christmas Day lunch together, allowing them to sit down and enjoy their Christmas lunch with their ‘work family.

Your support this Christmas will bring a little sparkle to the dark winter days and nights. Donate today:!/

Charity Christmas Cards

Charity Christmas cardsThe charity is excited to announce their new line of Christmas cards for 2022. Every card you buy, will be helping your local hospital to change lives. This year there are four cracking designs, each pack is £5.00 and contains 10 cards and envelopes. The cards are all made using responsibly sourced FSC certified card and are enclosed in recyclable shrink wrap. 100% of the profits goes towards helping our hospitals.

Buy today:






Join the Frimley fundraising Jingle Jog

jingle jogJingle bells, Jingle bells, Jingle all the way. Oh, what fun, it is to run, in the Jingle Jog 5K! Get into the Christmas spirit by joining us and over 600 runners on Sunday 11 December as Jingle Jog welcomes festive friends, families and colleagues to run a seasonal 5K around Frimley Green, near Camberley. All runners will receive a finishers medal, Santa hat, jingle bells, a mince pie and a drink as part of your entry fee, as well as lots of festive cheer out on the route. Prizes will be available for the winner of each age category and prices range from £16.00 for adults, £8.00 for children and £40.00 for a family of 4.

Tell us what you think

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