I si t n

Insight
T H E M A G A Z I N E F O R N O R T H A M P T O N G E N E R A L H O S P I TA L PAT I E N T S A N D V I S I T O R S
Winter 2012/2013
Issue 45
FRaEziE
ne
mag
Surgery while
being kept alive
ensures heart
attack survival
STEM CELL
DONATION
– IT’S SO
EASY TO
SAVE A LIFE
Brachytherapy
patient says
NGH staff are
‘fantastic’
ANEURYSM
SCREENING
WILL HALVE
DEATHS
John’s heartfelt
thanks to team
of lifesavers
WIN free tickets to A Christmas Carol – SEE BACK PAGE
Northampton General Hospital
NHS Trust
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you are:
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• Given practical support to help in discussions with schools and other
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• Helped to express your views and assist in getting them valued
by professionals
• Provided with information about other agencies which can help.
• Supported to participate in strategic decision making for services for
children and young people in Northamptonshire.
We also work with schools and Northamptonshire County
Council promoting working partnerships to ensure
parents’ views are heard.
For More Information:
Helpline: 08452 415552 - Telephone: 01604 636111
Email: [email protected] - Internet: www.npps.info
2 ❘ INSIGHT
Contents
Welcome
14
26
20
5
COVER IMAGE: LEE HILLYARD
Welcome to the Winter edition
of Insight – an issue that our
regular readers may notice is
a little weightier than before.
That’s because the magazine
will now be appearing every
three months instead of every
two - but with more pages.
We’ve made a few other
subtle changes in response
to your feedback, which we
always welcome. Please let us
know your views about the
magazine, particularly how
you think we can continue to
improve it.
And many thanks to those of
you who have written in to say
how satisfied you have been
with your treatment at the
hospital. These letters give a
great boost to our staff, and
we are now also publishing
some of your recent messages
on our website.
The hospital website (www.
northamptongeneral.nhs.uk) is
where you can keep up-to-date
with NGH news in between
your quarterly fix of Insight.
Until the next issue, we
wish all our readers a very
Merry Christmas and a
Happy New Year. We’ll see
you in the Spring!
Peter Kennell
Editor
10
25
19
Insight, the magazine for NGH patients, visitors and the
local community is published every three months by
Northampton General Hospital Communications, Cliftonville,
Northampton NN1 5BD. Insight is available online at
www.northamptongeneral.nhs.uk where you can also read
all our back issues (go to About Us, Documents
and publications)
Editor: Peter Kennell 01604 523871
Photos: Medical Illustration 01604 545251
Advertising: Octagon Design & Marketing 01909 478822
4Our new £2.2m Macmillan unit for
HAEMATOLOGY patients has been
officially opened
5Meet the national HAND HYGIENE
champion Chris Head – and did you
see our YouTube video sensation?
6Study the draft proposals for local
health services from the HEALTHIER
TOGETHER Review
8Read some of the nice things people
have been saying about us, here in
PATIENT PRAISE and online
9Our PLAY SPECIALISTS ease the
worries of younger patients in hospital
10When John Thomson had a heart
attack he survived thanks to a
dedicated team of NHS LIFESAVERS
14It’s so easy to save a life with a
STEM CELL DONATION - as healthcare
assistant Vanessa Turvey now knows
16A team of MIDWIFE SONOGRAPHERS
is speeding up ultrasound scans for
women in the third trimester
19Our COMMUNITY STROKE TEAM
have achieved a lot in a short time,
according to a network review
20A year on, the first patient given a
new BRACHYTHERAPY treatment for
prostate cancer praises NGH
22Read our tips on STAYING WELL
this winter
24Meet some of our staff in this
issue’s PEOPLE SPOTLIGHT
26A new AAA SCREENING
programme aims to halve deaths
from the condition
29Our thanks for more donations made to
Gosset ward, the NEONATAL UNIT
30Your gifts to our CHARITABLE
FUND help us do that little bit
more for patients
33NGH staff volunteered to be some
of the Olympic and Paralympic
GAMESMAKERS this summer
34Oesophageal cancer patients benefit
from local SUPPORT GROUP
35Trish Hughes talks about treating young
people with HODGKINS LYMPHOMA
36Announcements, diversions on the
Insight NOTICEBOARD
37Find your way to departments and
wards with the WAYFINDING MAP
38Read about NGH times gone by in
FROM THE ARCHIVE
40Win tickets to see A Christmas Carol in
our Royal & Derngate COMPETITION
It’s a Free for All!
Insight is a free magazine, and we
encourage our patients and visitors to take
one home with our compliments. Please
pass it on to a friend or relative when you
have read it.
Insight doesn’t cost the hospital anything
either, as the print and design are provided
free of charge in return for the revenue from
advertisers. No NHS or charitable donations
are used to fund its production.
INSIGHT ❘ 3
◗ MACMILLAN APPEAL
New haematology suite
is a unit to be proud of
Our state of the art haematology unit,
which welcomed its first patients in
February, was officially opened in October
by the president of Macmillan Cancer
Support, The Countess of Halifax. The
unit, which has cost more than £2 million
to develop, has been funded by the
hospital and a charity appeal by Macmillan
Cancer Support, with support from the
Chronicle & Echo.
Northamptonshire fundraising manager
for Macmillan, Cherida Plumb, said:
“It’s brilliant to see it finally open and to
have the chance to recognise all of the
support we have had from people. It has
been amazing.”
Medical director and haematology
consultant Dr Sonia Swart said the former
suite had been too small and improvements
had been much needed. She said the charity
appeal to fund improvements started when
a patient gave a donation after he was
treated at the old unit.
Dr Swart said: “It has improved
immeasurably the facilities for patients with
haematological cancers, and the design and
layout of the new unit helps our staff to give
the very best care to our patients. We are
very grateful to everyone who is supporting
the appeal. It’s taken 10 years but it’s a
testament to everybody involved that we
didn’t give up on this. We have now got a
unit to be proud of.”
Linda Hudson, aged 68, has been a patient
at both of the units. The grandmother of
four was diagnosed non Hodgkin lymphoma
in 2006 and has since raised £15,000 for the
appeal. She said: “The new unit is a very
uplifting place even when you are feeling
grotty. The ambience of the place is not like
a hospital. It’s a much better facility for the
patients and nurses.”
We are getting near to achieving the £1.55m
fundraising target for the Macmillan
Haematology Unit. To find out how you can
help us, please contact 0300 1000 200 or
visit www.macmillan.org.uk
Staff help to raise funds too
In our June issue we reported that consultant haematologist Dr Angela Bowen
had successfully run the London Marathon and raised over £6,000 for the
Macmillan haematology appeal. In fact now the final total has been confirmed
by Macmillan, she actually collected an amazing £8,436.94 - so a big thank
you to Angela who is handing over the cheque to acting sister Chris Hipwell.
Three NGH departments joined in with Macmillan’s ‘World’s Biggest Coffee
Morning’ this year, and raised over £950 between them. Congratulations to
all those involved in organising these events, and to all staff who supported
them and donated to the cause.
4 ❘ INSIGHT
HAND HYGIENE ◗
Healthcare assistant
Chris receives national
hand hygiene award
A Northampton General Hospital
healthcare assistant has been
presented with a national award
for Hand Hygiene Champion of
2012 by the Infection Prevention
Society (IPS).
Christopher Head was awarded
the honour for his proactive and
enthusiastic teaching of effective
hand hygiene - not just to hospital
staff, but also to children and adults
in his local St John Ambulance group.
Wendy Foster, infection prevention
nurse specialist at NGH, nominated
Chris for the award earlier in the
year. She said: “Chris is a very
important link between the infection
and prevention control team and
the ward staff, and he undertakes
his role with enthusiasm and
passion. He is a very worthy winner
of the award.”
Chris has taught staff on the
emergency assessment unit, Allebone
and Benham wards about the
importance of effective hand hygiene
in reducing the risk of infection,
helping to ensure that patients’
journeys through the hospital are as
safe as possible.
Not only has Chris been invaluable
in this role at work, but he also
asked for specialist training so that
he could teach hand hygiene to
the members of his St John
Ambulance group, including
children from the age of seven
through to adults. Hand hygiene
has become increasingly important
to the charity since its activities are
now registered and inspected by
the Care Quality Commission.
Chris has been with NGH for eight
years, and also had a starring role
in the hit YouTube ‘Gangnamstyle’ video produced by NHS
Northamptonshire for Global
Handwashing Day. He said: “The
award came as a complete surprise,
it was brilliant. It’s a beautiful trophy
and will be taking pride of place on
the sideboard.”
Chris was selected as the joint
winner for the schülke Hand
Hygiene Champion of 2012, and
the award was presented at the
IPS annual conference in Liverpool
earlier this month. He received a
unique engraved crystal trophy and
certificate and was invited to the gala
dinner as a special guest.
Did you
see this?
Chris featured with other NGH
staff in a video made by NHS
Northamptonshire for Global
Handwashing Day on 15 October.
The video, based on the Gangnam
Style hit by South Korean rapper Psy,
quickly amassed over 67,000 views
on YouTube and was featured in the
Sun newspaper and on the Guardian
website. It also led to Chris and
Wendy reprising their moves when
South Korean TV turned up to film
them at the hospital a few weeks
later. Many thanks to all our video
stars for helping to raise the profile
of hand hygiene!
The award
came as a
complete
surprise, it
was brilliant.
Healthcare assistant Chris Head, president of the Infection Prevention Society Julie
Storr, and NGH infection prevention nurse specialist Wendy Foster
To see the video, search on YouTube
for global handwashing gangnam or
type http://youtu.be/TGddyTW5eMc
into your browser.
INSIGHT ❘ 5
◗ THE BIG ISSUE
Working together for
a healthy future
Healthier Together is a review of the way healthcare
services are provided across the South East Midlands.
It is looking at the services provided in the five main
hospitals in Bedford, Kettering, Luton & Dunstable,
Milton Keynes and Northampton. The review is
being led by hospital consultants, GPs and
health professionals working together
with patients and local people.
is
We have
also taken
into account
feedback
from more
than 12,000
local people,
patients, NHS
staff and
stakeholders
so far.
6 ❘ INSIGHT
Since February 2012, the Healthier
Together team has been researching
and discussing the best way to
deliver health services that meet
the needs of the population of the
South East Midlands both now and
into the future.
We know that many services do not
need to be delivered from hospitals
and could be offered closer to
people’s homes. Equally we know
that for more complex and specialist
procedures the best way to get
improved results for our patients is
to pool expertise and resources across
the five local hospitals in Bedford,
Kettering, Luton & Dunstable,
Milton Keynes and Northampton.
Medically led, with
patient input
More than 200 medical experts hospital doctors, GPs, nurses and
midwives - are involved in Healthier
Together, working in six groups with
patients and public representatives.
They have been looking at the
following services:
◗ Cancer
◗ Long Term Conditions
◗ Maternity
◗ Children
◗ Planned Care
◗ Emergency and urgent care
Drawing on national and
international best practice, the
groups have developed draft reports
that have been used to develop
scenarios for how patients could
benefit from better, safer treatment
if services were reshaped. We have
also taken into account feedback
from more than 12,000 local people,
patients, NHS staff and stakeholders
who have come into direct contact
with Healthier Together so far.
Based on what we’ve learned,
we’re now looking carefully at
draft models of care that would
mean that the majority of routine
health services remained available
locally but that some complex
or emergency care would be offered on
fewer sites where evidence shows us
this would lead to improved outcomes
for patients. Several events will take
place over the next two months which
will allow greater opportunities for local
clinicians to discuss these models and
help shape future proposals.
Our key findings so far
Planned Care Clinical Working Group
emerging themes:
❙ Bringing together staff and resources
to create bigger, multi-disciplinary teams
carrying out more operations resulting in
improved outcomes for patients
❙ Focus on providing the best care in the
right place at the right time
❙ Patients may have to travel further to a
centre of excellence within the region but
they would get better results
❙ All outpatients appointments should be
available locally – including some services
delivered closer to home in the community
Children’s Services Clinical Working
Group emerging themes:
❙ Most care for children –
including care for long
term conditions –
should be provided
in the community
Healthcare
s constantly
changing
and
advancing
❙ Focus on
providing
earlier access to
senior clinical
assessment
❙ Critical and
more complex care
for children to be
concentrated on fewer sites
❙ Continued collaboration with specialist
centres in neighbouring areas
Cancer Care Clinical Working Group
emerging themes:
❙ Consolidation of some elective
specialties where this leads to improved
patient outcomes
We promise…
◗ No hospitals will close. Northampton,
Kettering, Milton Keynes, Luton &
Dunstable and Bedford will all continue to
provide most local services
◗ All five hospitals will have an A&E
and maternity service
◗ Our first priority is safe, sustainable,
high quality services
◗ Our recommendations will be based
on clinical evidence and local need
◗ No decisions without full
public consultation
❙ Concentration of some
specialist diagnostics on
selected sites
❙ Improved co-ordination
of screening
❙ Development of
co-ordinated pathways
for increasing number
of people who live with
cancer as well as those
needing palliative care
❙ Consider developing
South East Midlands
cancer network
Maternity Care
Clinical working Group
emerging themes:
Our job is to ensure
local health services
keep up with the changes
and opportunities for
improvement, so we meet
your needs in the best
possible way. We want to
deliver a healthy future for
all our residents
and hospitals.
❙ Normalise low risk births as much
as possible
❙ Offer choice through high quality
midwifery-led units on all five hospital sites
and home birth pathways
❙ Consultant-led services for more complex
care likely to be concentrated on three
hospital sites leading to improved levels of
consultant cover
Long Term Care Clinical Working
Group emerging themes:
❙ Less reliance on unnecessary hospital care
leading to significant bed reductions and
A&E attendances
❙ Implement common treatment pathways
across South East Midlands
❙ Co-ordination of whole of health and social
care network
❙ Greater specialist working in
the community
Emergency Care Clinical Working
Group emerging themes:
❙ Delivery of appropriate levels of emergency
care using appropriate staff including
specialist nurses and specially trained GPs
❙ All A&E departments to work to same
clear clinical protocols
❙ All hospitals across the South East
Midlands to work as a single network in
conjunction with all partners including
ambulance trusts.
What people tell us
We have been busy asking local people
whether they agree that local services do
need to change in order to keep up with the
challenges around, and opportunities for,
improvement. We’ve also been testing out
whether there is support for the general
direction of the programme. The results
have been encouraging. During the past
three months we have collected views
from over 1,000 people in staff meetings,
online forms, emails, written feedback, local
meetings and roadshows.
People told us that they supported the idea
of a healthcare system that provides as
many services as possible locally and more
serious emergency and specialist care at
centres where this leads to better results.
This included strong support for a network
of local, midwife-led maternity units
supporting low-risk pregnancies and births,
working with specialist maternity centres
for higher risk/complex births.
People did raise concerns about potentially
having to travel further for some services
and we are looking into this in more detail.
More information is available on the
Healthier Together website.
Where we are
At this stage, we are looking at draft
models of care and not specific hospital
sites. To get this right, we must take one
step at a time. First, we determine the best
structure for delivering care in the best
way to meet the needs of the population
of South East Midlands. Only when the
Programme Board is confident they have
the right structure will they decide which
configuration would lead to the best
outcomes for the local population. We will
then share these draft proposals and invite
comments from the public as part of a full
public consultation in 2013.
In the meantime we will continue to listen
to clinicians and local people’s views to help
shape the development of firm proposals. To
let us know your thoughts you can:
◗ Email us at [email protected]
miltonkeynes.nhs.uk
◗ Call us on 01908 278735
◗ Write to us at Freepost RSCU-JUCGRZCE, Healthier Together, NHS 155
Sherwood Drive, Bletchley MK3 6RT
◗ Fill in our questionnaire, and
register for regular updates on our
website www.healthiertogethersoutheast
midlands.nhs.uk
INSIGHT ❘ 7
◗ LETTERS
Great customer service
at day surgery unit
◗ At A&E I was registered,
assessed, x-rayed and treated in
an hour on a Sunday afternoon!
Excellent service and the system
was flawless. A big thanks to
those who treated me and my
appreciation to the NHS.
Most of my conscious time was in the recovery
suite where I was handled by Leonor – smiling,
friendly, great customer service – a special
word for her.
◗ NGH saved my life with a neck
dissection operation last year and
the care was out of this world
Please pass these comments to the team. They
are a credit to NGH and reinforce my belief in
the quality of our beloved NHS. My experience
will be shared widely with family and friends.
Keep up the great work! Best wishes to all.
Staff nurse
Leonor Almeida
David
Nothing but praise for
Brampton Ward care
No-one “gave up on her”, nor felt that she
was too old for treatment, as we had feared
they might. We were supported the whole
way through the final stages of her life and,
following her death, were offered bereavement
care by the Evelyn Centre. An important
memory for us is that, apart from being kept
pain free, she was always kept impeccably
clean, hair brushed, hands and face moisturised
– little things I know, but it has stayed in our
minds and demonstrates a mark of respect
from the staff to her.
Sue Lovesy
Fantastic service in minor
injuries unit
Just wanted to say a big thank you to all the
staff at NGH who were involved in treating
my son for a fractured arm. It was his first trip
to hospital and despite being an apprehensive
patient, the staff in the minor injuries and
illnesses department were very friendly and
reassuring and were quickly able to put him at
ease. Likewise for the radiographer who was
also incredibly patient and caring.
Thankfully I have not had to visit NGH for a
number of years and therefore didn’t appreciate
all the changes. The setup in the MIaMI unit is
brilliant, I was very impressed at how quick we
8 ❘ INSIGHT
Many of our patients and
their relatives are kind
enough to take the time
to compliment hospital
staff and volunteers on
the standards of service
and care they provide.
We really appreciate all your
comments and publish many of
them on our website. Here are
some brief extracts from others we
have received recently.
I would like to say many thanks and
congratulations to the day surgery team who
treated me yesterday. From entering the unit at
1pm until leaving at 6pm I was dealt with by a
series of superb professionals who treated me
with friendliness, care and respect. Support
staff, anaesthetist team, the surgeon, the
recovery suite team – all were fantastic!
I would like to commend Brampton Ward for
their excellent care of my 84 year old motherin-law. We were made to feel welcome on the
ward and were involved in decisions about her
care and informed of every change in the state
of her health. The service we received from
all was second to none, and we have nothing
but praise for the staff and their excellent
care of her.
Patient praise
were triaged, x-rayed and the cast applied. We
drove out the car park (all fixed up), just less
than an hour after we arrived! Even finding a
car parking space was simple and the paying
on exit so much easier and less stressful.
I know at times there can be a great deal of
criticism angled at NGH and the staff, so I
really wanted to express my gratitude and
congratulate the hospital and staff on getting
the service just right in the minor injuries and
illnesses dept. A great idea!
HS
◗ Dr Bajwa was kind,
compassionate and reassuring.
He is an asset to the hospital
and should be praised for
his commitment.
◗ We were treated with respect and
were looked after very well. We had
a lot of input into Dad’s care and
were kept up-to-date daily. Keep up
the good work you are doing. We
know it can be a thankless task
but believe us you are all doing a
great job.
◗ Big up to all staff at Creaton ward
who looked after me so well. They
work extremely hard with some
very ‘challenging’ patients. I know I
couldn’t do it.
◗ The hospital is very clean, and
staff have been fantastic, efficient
and reassuring. Being taken to an
unfamiliar hospital after a crash
was scary but I have been shown
the NHS at its best.
◗ Balmoral ward staff were very
supportive and a credit to the
hospital. Thanks for making mine
and my little baby’s two-week
stay comfortable.
◗ I have not been in hospital for 30
years, however this experience has
given me great faith in the system.
Well done everyone.
See more at
www.northamptongeneral.nhs.uk
If you would like to share your
positive comments, please
get in touch with us - email
[email protected]
CHILDREN’S SERVICES ◗
Play in hospital eases
children’s worries
From a child’s perspective, having
blood drawn can be a scary procedure.
It takes skilled staff to know how to
calm an anxious child and get the
necessary samples in a quick and
painless manner.
As well as the skill of the
phlebotomist, Northampton General
Hospital’s play specialists also
play a key role at special clinics
that now take place in the children’s
outpatients department for
youngsters who need to have
blood tests.
One or more of the hospital’s nine
play specialists, normally based on
Disney and Paddington children’s
wards, are on hand to distract the
children and ensure that anxiety
levels are kept to a minimum.
Nathan Lewis, who is 10 and lives in
Hunsbury, seemed quite at ease while
he had some blood taken, saying that
he could feel only a small scratch as
phlebotomist Gillian Coupe carried
out the procedure.
National Play in Hospital Week took
place in October, an annual initiative
founded by the National Association
of Health Play Specialists (NAHPS)
and which was organised for a second
year by national children’s charity
Starlight Children’s Foundation.
The aim of the week was to raise
awareness of the benefits of play
in the treatment of poorly children
across the UK.
NGH play service coordinator Sue
Faulkner said: “The idea of ‘play in
hospital’ may seem unusual but it
provides an essential part in the care
of children and young people. It helps
to provide normality in a strange
and sometimes scary environment.
Play is used as communication to
prepare children so that they have
an understanding of the procedures
and treatment they may need to
undergo. Fears and anxieties can be
identified and addressed by using
distraction and implementing coping
strategies in order to promote a
positive experience.
“National Play in Hospital Week is
an excellent opportunity for us to
raise awareness of the benefits of
how play contributes to holistic care,
while organising a really fun week of
activities, games and entertainment
for our patients.”
Fact file
◗ Play specialists, working alongside
other health care professionals,
organise daily play and art activities
in the activity centre or at the
bedside, providing play to achieve
developmental goals, help children
master and cope with fears and
anxieties, and to prepare children for
hospital procedures. They also support
families and siblings, contribute to
clinical judgements through playbased observations, teach the value
of play for the sick child, encourage
peer group friendships to develop and
organise special events.
◗ Phlebotomists are specialised
clinical support workers/assistant
healthcare scientists who collect
blood from patients for examination
in laboratories, the results of which
provide valuable information to
diagnosing illness.
◗ The paediatric phlebotomy clinic
ensures that young patients can be
seen in a child-friendly area without
the need to visit the main blood taking
unit on the lower floor of the same
building. The clinics run four days a
week, and appointments are generally
booked for the following day or to
coincide with an appointment to see
a paediatric consultant.
The idea
of ‘play in
hospital’
may seem
unusual but
it provides
an essential
part in the
care of
children
and young
people.
Play specialist Kellie Rhucroft with Nathan Lewis, and phlebotomists Chris Sefton and Gillian Coupe
INSIGHT ❘ 9
◗ NHS TEAMWORK
Heart attack survivor
thanks his team of lifesavers
A Northampton man who suffered
a heart attack at home earlier
in the year received life-saving
treatment at the NGH Heart
Centre – despite being “dead” while
he was operated upon.
Against the odds, and despite
spending nine days in a drug-induced
coma in ITU following the operation,
John Thomson has since made a
remarkable recovery. He recently
met up with the paramedics and
some of the NGH staff who worked
so successfully together as a team
to save him, to thank them for what
they had done.
John, 60, of Links View, said: “For
me the NHS was spot-on, absolutely
marvellous. The paramedic was
here in minutes, followed by the
ambulance with a van full of kit.
Everything was in place at the
hospital and it all worked splendidly.
I owe my life to the whole team.”
Back in the warm weather at the
end of May, John had ignored two
episodes of chest pains, once after
walking quickly and then later when
doing some physical work. But on
the Tuesday after the bank holiday
he had more pains as he sat in bed
having a cup of coffee, and he called
999. He said: “The paramedic was
here so quickly I was still on the
phone talking to the controller about
my symptoms.”
The first paramedic on the scene,
Harjot Singh, said: “I was planning
to take him to hospital to get
him checked over, so I asked the
ambulance crew to attend – but
by the time they arrived just a few
minutes later the ECG had changed
so much it showed John was having a
heart attack. We managed to get him
on to a chair, but halfway down the
stairs he suffered a cardiac arrest.”
>>
It’s very
unusual to
see someone
who was
dead for
80 minutes
or so while
being
artificially
supported
and then
make a full
recovery
from it.
John Thomson with wife Anita and daughter Hollie meet some of John’s team of lifesavers – paramedics, and NGH staff from the
heart centre and ITU
10 ❘ INSIGHT
John and Anita in their garden
INSIGHT ❘ 11
◗ NHS TEAMWORK
John’s wife Anita said: “I saw
John before they took him into the
ambulance, and it didn’t look good.
He made this awful noise as they
brought him down the stairs, like
an injured dog yelping. He didn’t
respond to me. I thought he’d gone.
That was it.”
Harjot worked with paramedics Lisa
Partridge and Sasha Tinston in the
ambulance to perform CPR on John.
Harjot said: “John’s eyes were open
while we were doing CPR on him
- which has never happened before –
and I remember being in two minds
whether to shock him until Sasha
shouted at me to do it. Every time
we pressed the button he screamed,
but we carried on doing it all the
way to hospital. Luckily there was
a good team there to look after him,
and Dr Cox was available in the
heart centre.”
Cardiology consultant Dr Dominic
Cox said: “When I was called about
John from A&E and was told that he
was in cardiac arrest, my immediate
reaction was that he could not be
saved. But one of the doctors told me
that, remarkably, John was able to
respond to commands while being
resuscitated, which was a sign that
resuscitation had been unbelievably
good from the moment he suffered
cardiac arrest.”
John had been given a number of
defibrillating shocks but they only
restored heart rhythm for a very
brief period or not at all. So he was
in ventricular fibrillation, a fatal
heart rhythm, but being kept alive by
artificial external cardiac massage.
He was kept on a LUCAS artificial
heart pump and taken to the cath
lab in the heart centre, where the
problem for Dr Cox and his team was
how to perform a cardiac procedure
on a patient who had no output from
his heart.
take it hour by hour. We weren’t sure
whether he would come out of the
coma, or whether his brain would
be damaged. His kidneys stopped
working properly because of the
weak heart output, and filtering
them took out the drugs they were
putting in. Having to lie still led
to a chest infection. How he pulled
through it all I don’t really know.”
Fortunately they were able to get
into an artery in John’s leg, and there
was enough blood pressure being
supported by the LUCAS machine
to allow an emergency angioplasty
to be carried out, unblocking the
vessel that was causing John’s heart
attack. Two stents were inserted into
a major coronary artery. Halfway
through the procedure his heart
was shocked to restore him out of
ventricular fibrillation to what was
still a very sick heart rhythm, and
an intraaortic balloon pump was
inserted up through the leg artery to
support his heart in circulating blood.
John was then transferred to ITU
where his head was cooled to prevent
brain damage by the low cardiac
output, and he spent nine days in a
medically-induced coma.
What made the difference
was that he had full CPR from
the moment he suffered the
heart attack.
Anita said: “When I asked what were
John’s chances, Dr Cox couldn’t say.
He said at this stage you must just
I don’t
remember
a thing until
about ten
days later,
although I did
have some
very weird
hallucinations
in ITU!
John meets consultant cardiologist Dr Dominic Cox, and East Midlands Ambulance
Service paramedics (l-r) Lisa Partridge, Harjot Singh and Sasha Tinston
12 ❘ INSIGHT
Dr Cox admitted that after the
operation his feelings about John
were still very pessimistic. “There
were as many times I saw him
dying rather than surviving, but
he gradually made headway and
was able to breathe for himself. It’s
very unusual to see someone who
was dead for 80 minutes or so while
being artificially supported and then
make a full recovery from it. I’ve seen
nothing like this before, and it’s a
really remarkable story.
“What made the difference was that
he had full CPR from the moment
he suffered the heart attack, and the
chain of survival was unbroken from
the paramedic crew through to A&E,
the cath lab and ITU. Everything
just worked out perfectly for him
and, if just one part of that chain
had slipped, I don’t think John would
have survived.”
Subsequently John has had a further
procedure to have a third stent
inserted and to check the results of
the original emergency operation.
Despite some mild damage to his
heart his prospects are good, and
he hopes to start work again in the
new year once he has conquered
some muscle pain that he is still
experiencing. John said: “From when
I was taken out to the ambulance I
was really just a passenger. I don’t
remember a thing until about ten
days later, although I did have some
very weird hallucinations in ITU!
What I do know is that I was in the
right place. There was no weak link
in my chain, and it was a fantastic
team effort from everybody involved.”
INSIGHT ❘ 13
◗ STEM CELL DONATION
Saving a life is so easy
For many people suffering from a blood
cancer, such as leukaemia, a blood stem
cell transplant may be their last chance
of life. The Anthony Nolan Register of
potential donors aims to provide a lifesaving
transplant to every person with blood cancer
who needs help.
All blood cells originate in the bone marrow
from the same type of cell, called a blood
stem cell. A blood stem cell, or bone marrow,
transplant can replace a damaged immune
system in a person with blood cancer – but
only if the donor’s cell type matches.
Currently, a matching donor can only be found
for half the people who are in desperate need
of a lifesaving transplant.
But it doesn’t take a lot to become a donor,
as A&E healthcare assistant Vanessa
Turvey told us after she donated stem cells
in October. “It was really easy and I had no
ill effects at all,” she said. “In fact within
half an hour I was out shopping on the
streets of London!”
Vanessa had given blood for many years, and
over 15 years ago she also signed up to the
British Bone Marrow Register, which is now
operated by the Anthony Nolan Trust. She
thought no more about it until a letter arrived
in August this year saying they had found
a match and asking whether she wanted to
go through with a donation. Vanessa said: “I
told them I did and they sent some bottles for
more blood to test, which they sent a courier
to pick up. Soon afterwards they asked me
to come down to London for a medical and
further blood tests. Then within four days of
that they rang to say my blood was a perfect
match, and I again confirmed that I wanted
the donation to go ahead.”
There are two methods of donating stem
cells. One method is called peripheral blood
stem cell collection, where the blood is
The donated stem cells are packaged up for
transport to the recipient
14 ❘ INSIGHT
taken through a tiny tube in your arm, and
the cells are donated by passing the blood
through a machine. The second is by stem
cells taken from bone marrow in the pelvis
under general anaesthetic.
As she was told there is no difference to the
receiver which method is used, Vanessa chose
peripheral blood stem cell collection. This
involved a community nurse coming out on
four separate days to give injections which
helped her body to produce and release stem
cells into her blood. Then she travelled up
to a London hospital along with her friend
Louise Wilson. “Louise’s son Michael died of
leukaemia here on Talbot Butler ward aged
23,” said Vanessa, “and I think her coming
with me was of some benefit to her. She took
several photos and helped me record a video
diary of the experience.”
Vanessa’s white blood cell count wasn’t quite
high enough so she was given one more
injection, and then on the following morning
had the procedure, which took about five
hours. She also had one more injection and
donated again the morning after, because
ideally more stem cells are required when the
person receiving is heavier.
“You’re told to expect tiredness, aching
bones and flu-like symptoms,” said Vanessa
- but even after two donations I don’t think
it had any effect on me at all. I just felt
much the same as when I’ve done a 12-hour
shift in A&E. My pain level is quite high,
but I think they were quite shocked that I
didn’t have any ill effects. Within half an
hour of the drip being detached we were out
shopping in London!”
The stem cells have to be given to the
recipient within 72 hours of being donated,
and donors are allowed to pass on a card
and sign their first name. Depending on how
poorly the person is, and whether they want
to get in touch, they could pass on a reply to
the donor through the Anthony Nolan Trust.
The recipient could be anywhere in the world,
but it is possible that Vanessa could meet up
with them at some point.
“It’s difficult not knowing whether it was a
complete success, but every day since I cross
my fingers and hope that it’s working for
them,” said Vanessa. “I do think many more
people should consider making a donation. It
hasn’t cost me anything, it certainly hasn’t
caused me any ill health - but it’s a really nice
feeling to think that somewhere out there,
fingers crossed, you’ve saved a life.”
Steve’s family desperately organised local
donor drives to help find a match
Dad saved by blood
stem transplant
thanks donor
The life of a
Northamptonshire
dad has recently
been saved by an
anonymous donor.
Steve Evans, from
Bugbrooke, had
weeks to find a successful match to cure
his blood cancer when one was found,
thought to be by a young man in another
part of the country.
The transplant came after Mr Evans’s
family had desperately organised local
donor drives, which targeted younger men
who are able to stay on the donor drive for
many years.
A tearful Mr Evans said: “Until you have
experienced this situation, you don’t know
how you will react, so I think it is very
difficult for teenagers to understand the
magnitude of putting themselves on the
Anthony Nolan list. The person who did
this is an absolute hero.”
Despite a long wait for a match, the
transplant was over in less than an hour.
Mr Evans, aged 57, said: “I’ve been
waiting for two-and-a-half years for this
and it was so simple, they just put me on
a drip with the stem cells in and it was
over in 45 minutes. It was a bit of an anticlimax but it was the most important 45
minutes of my life.”
Vanessa making her
donation of stem cells
Are you aged 18-40 years,
weigh over 8 stone (51 kgs)
and in good health?
Go on, join the Anthony
Nolan Register today at
www.anthonynolan.org today.
0303 303 0303
[email protected]
www.anthonynolan.org
INSIGHT ❘ 15
◗ WOMEN’S SERVICES
These midwives are
ultra-sound
A team of NGH midwives specially
trained to carry out ultrasound
scans has been boosted by two newly
qualified sonographers.
A weekly midwife-led ultrasound
clinic has been held in the hospital’s
antenatal unit since May, when
we established a team of midwife
sonographers to carry out ultrasound
scanning for women in their third
trimester. Now two new members
have boosted the team to five, and
the clinic is proving a quick and
efficient way to check babies’ growth
and position when a woman or her
midwife has any concerns.
It feels very
much like a
step forward.
Midwifery sister Julie James said:
“Women are normally scanned at
around 12 and 20 weeks gestation to
check for any abnormalities, and for
straightforward pregnancies there
is no need for more. Your midwife
can keep an eye on how your baby
is growing by measuring what is
known as the fundal height, plus
check that you are keeping healthy
by carrying out blood pressure, urine
and blood tests.
“The most common reason for a
scan in the third trimester is to
check that your baby is growing
normally. The number of referrals
to antenatal clinic for this reason
has increased since the introduction
of customised growth charts,
which estimate the birth weight
of a baby based on the mother’s
measurements and characteristics.
“Women needing this assessment
used to be seen by a consultant, even
though most were found to have
normal growth and no other obstetric
concerns, so were referred back to
their community midwives.
“Now we can see women who are
otherwise low risk here in the
midwife clinic. It frees up the limited
appointments with consultants for
more complex problems, but more
importantly women can be referred
here more quickly, and most of
them also like being scanned by a
midwife. It feels very much like a
step forward.”
The weekly clinics currently run
on Friday afternoons, although it is
planned to introduce more sessions
in the near future.
Ronnie’s new
challenge
Ronnie Heslip,
one of the
newly-qualified
sonographers,
has been a
midwife for over
17 years, and
joined NGH in
1998. She said:
“I wanted to do something
completely different to my role
as a community midwife. This job
provided the challenge of learning
something new and exciting but still
enabled me to have that connection
with the pregnant women.”
In order to qualify Ronnie
completed 120 hours practical
‘hands on’ experience of
supervised practice in the
antenatal clinic and the ultrasound
department. She also had to
complete a 3,000-word case
study of a particular case she
experienced during the course.
Midwifery sister Julie James (front) with (l-r) Maria Maclaren-Love, Ronnie Heslip and Nisha Apabhai. Ronnie and
Nisha are the two newly-qualified midwife sonographers. Ann Walsh is also part of the team but is not pictured
16 ❘ INSIGHT
Ronnie, who describes herself
as committed, enthusiastic, and
realistic, said: “I enjoy all aspects
of my job. I’ve never lost the
fulfillment in knowing you may have
made a difference in a positive way,
however small that difference.”
Midwife sonographer Julie James carries
out an ultrasound scan
INSIGHT ❘ 17
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AND OUT OF SCHOOL CLUB
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•O
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aged up to 11 years
•F
resh meals and snacks prepared on the
premises each day
• Open all year from 7.30 to 6pm
Newhaven
care homes
• 24hr Nursing Care
• Respite Care
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• Learning Disability Care
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within Falconers Hill Infant School
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email: [email protected]
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email: [email protected]
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St Francis’ Children’s Society exists to help find homes for some of
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from people of any cultural and social background.
Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust, has not vetted the advertisers in this publication
and accepts no liability for work done or goods supplied by any advertiser. Nor does
Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust endorse any of the products or services.
Every possible care has been taken to ensure that the information given in this publication
is accurate. Whilst the publisher would be grateful to learn of any errors, it cannot accept
any liability over and above the cost of the advertisement for loss there by caused. No
reproduction by any method whatsoever of any part of this publication is permitted without
written consent of the copyright owners.
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18 ❘ INSIGHT
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STROKE SERVICE ◗
NGH community stroke
team praised by review
The community stroke service
provided by Northampton
General Hospital NHS
Trust has earned praise
from a review carried out
by the East Midlands
cardiovascular network.
The team provides a
countywide rehabilitation
service to support stroke
patients in their own homes.
Members of the team,
comprising occupational
therapists, physiotherapists,
nurses, speech and language
therapists, rehabilitation
practitioners and assistants,
visit patients after they leave
hospital following a stroke.
They work with patients to
help improve their mobility
and everyday tasks such as
washing and dressing, and
help them prepare for return
to work or leisure pursuits.
It is a service available seven
days a week, and is tailored
to meet the needs of each
individual patient.
The network’s report said the
reviewers were impressed by
“the huge amount that had
been achieved by the team in
such a short period of time,
particularly in delivering
such a comprehensive service
across such a large and rural
geographical area”. They
remarked that team members
Some of our community stroke team
showed a “high level of
commitment to the service
and an enthusiasm for
delivering individually
targeted rehabilitation”.
Notes are retained in the
patient’s own home, so
information about their
progress and treatment is
available to the patient, their
family and carers throughout
their support by the team.
The patient and carer
representatives involved in
the review particularly liked
the sheet in the notes which
supported communication
between the team and the
patient’s family.
The reviewers were also
impressed by the weekly
electronic timetabling used
by the team which allowed
resource to be used most
effectively, took into account
patient’s wishes and supported
the patient and their families
in planning their life around
appointments. This was seen
as an area of good practice
that could be shared with
other teams.
NGH medicine general
manager Fiona Lennon said:
“The team has proved to
be a great success with our
patients, many of whom have
been very complimentary
about the excellent service
Fact file
The East Midlands cardiovascular
network, which is clinically led,
aims to ensure that patients
receive the best care and
treatment available for certain
conditions, wherever they live in
the region. The organisation works
with commissioners and last year
helped to fund the establishment
of the NGH service as one of
several schemes to establish early
supported discharge from hospital.
More information is available at
www.emcvn.nhs.uk
Occupational therapist Reem
Al-Tamimi working with stroke
patient Fred Ansell (from
Abington) in his kitchen
they received. The team are
a huge help to people who
have had a stroke, and they
also enable us to care for
more patients in hospital by
enabling these patients to be
discharged sooner than would
otherwise be the case.
“Referrals to the team are
growing on a month by month
basis as its reputation
spreads, and the number is
currently averaging around
50 a month. The majority of
patients are visited by the
team the day after discharge
from hospital, so it really is
a great example of joined-up
care from the NHS.”
The Northamptonshire Community
Stroke Team, managed by
Northampton General Hospital
NHS Trust, was established in
September 2011. In November
2011 the team started taking all
stroke patients with rehabilitation
potential and began delivering a
seven day service in December
2011. The team provide a service
for patients who have had a
recent stroke, have rehabilitation
potential and are registered with a
Northamptonshire GP. The majority
of patients come from either
Northampton or Kettering General
Hospitals but they also come from
a variety and community hospitals
and from acute hospitals outside
the area.
The service is available seven days
a week from 8.30am to 4.30pm,
52 weeks a year except Christmas
Day and New Year’s Day. The team
provides access to both qualified
and support staff across all seven
days, although the service at the
weekend prioritises new patients,
those with an urgent need for
timely input and those with a
requirement for particularly high
intensity rehabilitation. To receive
the service the patient must be
safe to be discharged home, their
package of care and equipment
in place, and a stroke physician
to have assessed the patient and
consented to the referral. The
service is split into two teams,
based at NGH and Isebrook
Hospital, Wellingborough, to cover
the whole county.
INSIGHT ❘ 19
◗ RADIOTHERAPY
First patient given new
life-saving treatment says
NGH staff were ‘fantastic’
In October 2011, NGH introduced
a treatment called high dose rate
(HDR) brachytherapy - an innovative
form of internal radiation therapy
for the treatment of cancer. On the
first anniversary of his successful
operation, the first patient we treated
with this technique has been singing
the praises of staff at Northampton
General Hospital.
Philip Robinson, 60, from Abington,
and who prefers to be called ‘Pip’,
describes himself as a Northampton
boy - born and bred in the town. He
said: “I’ve always thought of NGH
as ‘my’ hospital, and it’s always
been there for me. When I was
diagnosed with prostate cancer last
year, the staff here were superb.
Everywhere we went in the hospital
we met fantastic people doing a
fantastic job.”
Pip’s wife Christine agreed: “Here
you just feel like everybody’s your
friend. Staff must see I don’t know
how many people a day but to us
they’re ours, our friends. It’s a real
family atmosphere, just lovely.”
I was treated
like a king,
and was
allowed to
go home at
lunchtime
the following
day.
20 ❘ INSIGHT
In February 2011 Pip had reported
some urinary problems to his GP,
and a subsequent blood test showed
a raised level of PSA (prostate
specific antigen) which indicated
a possibility of prostate cancer.
After this was confirmed he was
started on a two-year programme of
hormone therapy to help reduce the
size of the tumour.
Consultant clinical oncologist Dr
Christine Elwell told Pip he would be
a suitable patient to benefit from the
new HDR brachytherapy treatment,
a more accurate and effective way
to treat more advanced tumours.
This new technique is not widely
available, and NGH is one of few
hospitals currently offering it.
Pip said: “I understood that I would
be the first patient at NGH to be
treated this way, but the need for
only 15 visits for radiotherapy
afterwards instead of 37 was a big
plus point. I decided to go ahead with
it, and I’m pleased I did.”
HDR brachytherapy, sometimes
known as temporary brachytherapy,
involves inserting a source of highdose radiation into the affected
area, in Pip’s case the prostate
gland, for a few minutes at a time
to destroy cancer cells. The high
initial dose means that only three
weeks of external radiotherapy are
necessary afterwards – less than
half that needed with conventional
brachytherapy, when tiny
implantable radioactive seeds are left
permanently in place.
Consultant radiographer Glenda
Logsdail said: “With HDR
brachytherapy, the first dose we
give to the prostate is very high,
but the dose given to surrounding
normal tissue is less than with
normal radiotherapy – even though
these days that can also be shaped
to the prostate. Unlike x-rays
which go straight through,
the brachytherapy dose is all
concentrated on the tumour.”
Despite all the preparation, Pip
almost didn’t have his operation. “I
had a phone call on the Friday from
urology nurse Sally Mora, asking
me whether I had started taking the
pills that I had to have for several
days before the operation, which
was scheduled for Tuesday. I hadn’t,
and had to make a quick trip to the
chemist. If she hadn’t made that
phone call, my op wouldn’t have been
able to go ahead, so that’s another
example of how well staff looked
after me.”
Here you just feel like
everybody’s your friend.
“After the operation I remember
coming round in the recovery area
and being asked if I would like some
toast. Well, that jam on toast was the
finest I’ve ever tasted! I stayed in
overnight on Hawthorn ward, where
I was treated like a king, and was
allowed to go home at lunchtime the
following day.”
So impressed was Pip with his care
at NGH that he took on the role
of talking to other patients who
were planning to have the same
procedure, so that he could help to
allay their concerns.
He is due to finish the course of
hormone therapy in February 2013.
His PSA score is down from 10 to
0.1, he is feeling well, and is back
to leading a relatively normal life.
“Without the operation I would
probably have had eighteen months
or two years to live,” he said. “Now I
should have much longer. Everybody
tells me I’m looking well, so I mustn’t
let them down!”
“I know the NHS comes in for a lot
of criticism, but I hate it when
people do that without having any
personal experience. They just don’t
know. These people at the sharp end
were tip-top, and my treatment here
was superb.”
(l-r) Consultant radiographer Glenda
Logsdail, Pip Robinson, and NGH
urology nurse Sally Mora
Brachytherapy is a form of radiation therapy that utilises radioactive implants placed directly into the body. These implants are placed in or very
near the tissue that is to be treated.
For prostate cancer conventional brachytherapy, tiny implants or “seeds” are implanted directly into the prostate where they remain permanently.
For a set amount of time, these seeds are radioactive and deliver radiation to the prostate, hopefully eliminating any nearby cancerous tissue.
With high-dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy, the same idea is at work. Laser-thin, hollow catheters are used to deliver a precise, three-dimensional
dose of radiation. The catheters are temporarily inserted in and around the prostate using image-guidance. There are no radioactive seeds left
in the body, as is the case with other types of brachytherapy. Because there is no incision and no surgical wound to heal, recovery from the
procedure is generally rapid.
INSIGHT ❘ 21
◗ WINTER WELLNESS
Stay warm, stay well this winter
Cold homes have a significant
impact on people’s health. One
of the best ways of keeping
yourself well during winter is
to stay warm. Keeping warm
over the winter months can
help prevent colds, flu or more
serious health conditions
such as heart attacks, strokes,
pneumonia and depression.
If you’re over 65 or at risk of
complications from flu, make
sure you have a free flu jab –
and follow these tips to stay
well this winter.
How to stay warm
◗ Keep your home warm. Your
main living room should be
between around 18-21C (6570F) and the rest of the house
at a minimum of 16C (61F). You
can also use a hot-water bottle
or electric blanket (but not both
at the same time) to keep warm
while you’re in bed.
◗ Wrap up warm, inside and
out. Layer your clothing to stay
warm and wear shoes with
a good grip if you need to go
outside. If possible, stay inside
during a cold period if you have
heart or respiratory problems.
◗ Check on older neighbours or
relatives to make sure they’re
safe and well. Make sure they’re
warm enough, especially at
night, and have stocks of food
and medicines so they don’t
need to go out during very
cold weather. If you’re worried
about a relative or an elderly
neighbour, contact your local
council or ring the Age UK
helpline on 0800 00 99 66.
Eat well
Food is a vital source of energy,
which helps to keep your body
warm. Try to make sure that
you have hot meals and drinks
regularly throughout the day
and keep active in the home if
you can.
22 ❘ INSIGHT
When it’s cold and dark outside
it can be tempting to fill up on
unhealthy comfort food, but it’s
important to ensure that you
still keep your diet healthy and
include five portions of fruit and
veg a day. If you find yourself
craving a sugary treat, try a
juicy clementine or satsuma
instead, or sweet dried fruits
such as dates or raisins.
Winter vegetables such as
carrots, parsnips, swede
and turnips can be roasted,
mashed or made into soup for a
comforting winter meal for the
whole family. Explore varieties
of fruit and veg that you may
not normally eat.
Winter is the perfect season for
a hearty breakfast of porridge.
Eating a warm bowlful on a cold
morning isn’t just a delicious
way to start your day, it also
helps you to boost your intake
of starchy foods and fibre, which
give you energy and help you to
feel fuller for longer, stopping
the temptation to snack midmorning. Oats also contain lots
of vital vitamins and minerals.
Make your porridge with semiskimmed or skimmed milk or
water, and don’t add sugar or
salt. Add a few dried apricots,
some raisins, a sliced banana
or other fruit for extra flavour
and to help you hit the five-aday target.
Stop infections
spreading
Everyone has a part to play in
helping to prevent the spread
of common winter infections
including diarrhoea and
vomiting (sometimes known
as Norovirus) and respiratory
viruses such as flu. Hand
washing with soap and warm
water is the most important
thing you can do to help reduce
the spread of infections. Good
respiratory hygiene measures
include using disposable paper
tissues when sneezing, coughing
and blowing your nose followed
by disposing of any tissues
and then washing your hands.
These simple measures, plus
not visiting a patient in hospital
if you are unwell yourself, can
make a big difference and will
help protect you, your family
and those around you. If you
are poorly with diarrhoea and
vomiting, then there are a few
simple actions you can take to
help yourself feel better and
protect those around you.
◗ Firstly, remember to drink
plenty of water as you may
become dehydrated when you
are ill
◗ Stay away from work or
school, etc.
◗ Do not go to A&E or your GP
practice unless you require
urgent medical attention for
another condition
◗ Wash your hands regularly
◗ Don’t share washing items
or towels
◗ Keep soiled washing separate
from other items. They should
be laundered on as hot a wash
as possible
◗ Clean toilet seats, toilet
bowl, flush handles and taps/
wash basins twice a day with
detergent and hot water
If the symptoms of diarrhoea
and/or vomiting last longer
than four days, then seek
telephone advice from NHS
Direct (0845 46 47) or contact
your GP practice.
Choose well
You don’t always need to see
a GP or go to A&E if you are
unwell. A range of common
illnesses and complaints can
be treated with a well-stocked
medicine cabinet and plenty
of rest.
◗ NHS Direct provides
expert health advice and
information via a confidential
telephone service, 24 hours a
day, seven days a week. You
can call 0845 46 47 or visit
www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk
◗ Your local Pharmacy
(chemist) can provide
confidential, expert advice
and treatment for a range
of common illnesses and
complaints, without having to
wait for a GP appointment
or go to A&E.
◗ Your GP can help if you have
an illness or injury that won’t go
away. If it’s an emergency and
you need care after hours, call
your GP surgery and listen to
the message which will let you
know what to do. If you live in
Northamptonshire and urgently
need a doctor out of normal
hours, ring 03336 664 664. The
Out of Hours service is available
between 6.30pm and 8am, and
at weekends and bank holidays
(24 hours).
An emergency is a critical or
life-threatening situation, and
A&E departments or the 999
ambulance service should only
be used in these situations.
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Every possible care has been taken to ensure that the information given in this publication is accurate.
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the cost of the advertisement for loss there by caused. No reproduction by any method whatsoever of
any part of this publication is permitted without written consent of the copyright owners.
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Britannic Chambers, 8A Carlton Road, Worksop, Nottinghamshire S80 1PH.
Tel: 01909 478822
Northampton General Hospital NHS
Trust, has not vetted the advertisers
in this publication and accepts no
liability for work done or goods
supplied by any advertiser. Nor
does Northampton General Hospital
NHS Trust endorse any of the
products or services.
INSIGHT ❘ 23
◗ PEOPLE SPOTLIGHT
Althorp thanks
for midwives
Bobby and Sally
Bobby said: “I was initially
apprehensive about caring
for such a high profile couple,
although need not have worried
as they made me feel very much
at ease as soon as I met them.
Sally and I feel privileged and
honoured to have assisted with
the birth of the first baby to be
born at Althorp House since 1793,
and we will always have fond
memories of this experience.”
Louisa and Stuart Munro with baby
Harry and midwife Bobby Williams
Two senior midwives from the
NGH home birth team attended
the birth of Lady Charlotte Diana
Spencer, who was born at Althorp
in July. Babita (Bobby) Williams
was Countess Karen Spencer’s
named midwife, and attended with
Sally O’Connell as second midwife
as is normal practice.
Countess Spencer said: “The
two midwives who helped with
the birth were wonderful: calm,
caring and professional. It was a
quick birth but, thanks to them,
largely stress-free.”
Bobby was again in the news
when she delivered the baby of
colleague Louisa Munro, who for
the past two-and-a-half years has
also been part of the home birth
team. Bobby, who attended the
birth despite being on annual
leave, said: “It was a real privilege
and something really special
for me, but there’s a bit more
pressure when you’re caring for
another midwife. You want to get
everything just right.”
Louisa, who gave birth to a son,
Harry, said: “Bobby was the one
who took me under her wing
when I first qualified and she had
so much experience. Something
between us clicked and she was
the perfect choice. I was extremely
glad Bobby was there, and if I have
another baby I know exactly who
I’ll call on next time too.”
It was with great sadness we
learned of the death of staff nurse
Sharon Green, who we featured on
the cover of our June/July 2010
issue. Sharon died
in November after
losing her battle
with cancer. She
was 51.
Most recently,
Sharon worked
as a valued
member of the
Main Theatres
Admissions team
here at NGH.
Gill Jones, lead nurse for the
unit, said: “Sharon was a caring
and compassionate professional
who will be fondly remembered
for her radiant smile, quiet
comforting nature, positive attitude
and determination.
“She was supported by her
faith throughout and was an
inspiration to us all. Sharon
will be greatly missed by all
those who have been fortunate
enough to know her as a
colleague and a friend.
It was a
quick birth
but, thanks
to them,
largely
stress-free.
Althorp home birth midwives
Bobby Williams and Sally O’Connell
24 ❘ INSIGHT
Sharon
Green
“Our thoughts and prayers
are with her family at this
difficult time.”
PEOPLE SPOTLIGHT ◗
Children’s nurse Olivia
is ‘an absolute credit’
Olivia King, a staff nurse on NGH Paddington
children’s ward, has been nominated as
an ‘NHS Hero’ by the mother of one of her
youngest patients.
After her five-days-old daughter Amélie lost too
much weight and was admitted to Paddington
ward, first-time mum Philippa Wright was
moved to write to the NHS Heroes national
website about the care provided by Olivia.
She wrote: “Olivia was an absolute rock. She
was friendly, positive and available, giving great
impartial advice. Olivia helped me bounce back
and work out a solution that works best for
Amélie and myself. She is an absolute credit to
the team and the hospital.”
Olivia said: “I remember mum and baby
very well, and Philippa thanked me when
she was here, but this award came as a
complete surprise. I’m overwhelmed by it
and really grateful.”
Olivia has been working on Paddington ward
since completing her training at NGH a year
ago. She said: “The first year has been great.
Not without its challenges, but recognition like
this makes everything worthwhile. I take a
great deal of pride in my work, and I absolutely
love what I do.”
The NHSHeroes.com website was set up to recognise the great work that individuals and teams do every
day in the NHS in England. The scheme ran for a limited period during the summer and is now closed, but
all NHS organisations continue to welcome feedback about members of staff who provide outstanding
care. To nominate staff from Northampton General Hospital, please email or write to our Patient Advice
and Liaison Service ([email protected]), NGH, Cliftonville, Northampton NN1 5BD.
Freda is a
real diamond
Cynthia
says yes
to skyfall
Cynthia Markstein has been a
volunteer with the Friends of
NGH for six years, as was her
late husband Henry who died of
cancer 18 months ago. So when
her hairdresser asked if she
wanted to join her in a 10,000ft
freefall parachute jump for breast
cancer research, she rather rashly
said ‘Yes’.
Fellow WRVS volunteer Sylvia Jane, who put Freda’s
name forward for selection, said: “Freda’s amazing. She
has done such good work over many years despite being
so very ill. She really deserves the recognition.”
Cynthia flew from Hinton-in-theHedges airfield to the drop zone,
and was strapped very tightly to
her instructor Simon, ready to
jump. She said: “I had had no
fear whatsoever for the previous
two months, but sitting with my
legs drooped outside a plane I
was terrified! However, having
dropped a mile in 45 seconds, the
chute opened and we floated for
five minutes to land exactly in the
landing zone. What an experience!
Apart from the thrill of a lifetime I
raised £1,000 for Breast Cancer
Research and would like to
gratefully thank everyone who
sponsored me.”
In many years of fundraising for NGH, Freda has raised
a total in excess of £25,000 to purchase vital equipment
for the hospital, much of it for the medical outpatients
department where she still works one day a week.
Our picture, courtesy of fellow
volunteer Brian Dew, shows Cynthia
after her jump - wearing Brian’s
old parachute smock.
Freda Rimmington has been a tireless WRVS volunteer
at the hospital for 27 years, so it was no surprise that
she should be selected as one of 60 regional ‘Diamond
Champions’ in recognition of her outstanding work for
the community.
Freda was invited to an award ceremony in Birmingham
where she was presented with a Diamond Champions pin
that was specially commissioned by The Prince of Wales
and The Duchess of Cornwall, patrons of the campaign,
and a certificate signed by their Royal highnesses.
INSIGHT ❘ 25
◗ AAA SCREENING
Screening programme
will save lives
Scans aim to halve deaths from condition that affects 1 in 25 men aged 65 and over
An estimated 6,000 people
each year, mostly men, die from
a ruptured abdominal aortic
aneurysm (AAA). It’s a condition
that affects the main blood vessel
that runs from your heart down
through your chest and abdomen.
There are often no symptoms and
no warning of a problem until an
aneurysm bursts.
Now all 65-year-old men in
Northamptonshire are starting to
benefit as a new national screening
programme for AAAs is extended
to the county. The aim of the
programme is to reduce deaths
from the condition by up to 50
per cent by detecting problems
early and offering appropriate
monitoring or treatment.
My view is
that it’s best
to know if
there is a
problem, so
what have
you got
to lose by
taking up the
opportunity
to have
it done?
26 ❘ INSIGHT
Approximately 80,000 men aged
between 65 and 74 in England have
an AAA (an aorta measuring more
than 3cm), which is around 1 in
25 of the age group. Because they
are most at risk from the condition,
invitations for screening are being
sent out to men in the area in the
year they turn 65. Men over 65
who have never been invited for
AAA screening can ask for a scan
by contacting the local screening
service, which is being coordinated
for the whole county by staff at
Northampton General Hospital.
Local programme screening
manager Gill Dunn said: “Men who
have an AAA will not generally
notice any symptoms, which is why
screening is so important. It is a
very simple, non-invasive scan,
which is carried out at your local
GP surgery. All you need to do is
lie on a couch, lift your shirt, and
have some cool jelly on your tummy
while a small scanner is moved
over your skin. The scan shows a
picture of the aorta on a screen
and we will be able to measure it.
The appointment takes just a few
minutes and you get the results
straight away.”
Most men have a normal result,
and get instant reassurance. If a
small aneurysm is found, meaning
that the aorta is a little wider than
normal, you would be invited back
for regular scans to check whether
it is getting any bigger. If a large
aneurysm is found, you would
be given an appointment with a
specialist team to have more tests
and to talk about possible treatment,
usually an operation.
Jack Foreman recently attended a
scanning appointment at his local
Abington Park surgery, and was
given a normal result after just five
minutes. He said: “It was all very
straightforward, and although I
am to some extent used to medical
tests, the scan is absolutely nothing
to worry about. My view is that it’s
best to know if there is a problem,
so what have you got to lose by
taking up the opportunity to have
it done?”
Consultant vascular surgeon Gabor
Libertiny said: “If an aneurysm
ruptures, approximately 50 per
cent of patients make it to hospital,
and around 50 per cent of those
will survive, so there is very
high mortality associated with
this condition. It’s clearly much
better to screen patients, monitor
those who are found to have an
aneurysm, and then treat them
with a planned procedure before a
problem becomes likely.”
Men aged over 65 can request a scan
by contacting the Northamptonshire
AAA screening programme office on
01604 523276.
Fact file
Abdominal aortic aneurysm
(AAA) is a serious vascular
condition. The aorta is the
body’s largest artery carrying
blood to all vital organs. Aortic
aneurysms are caused by a
progressive weakening of the
aortic wall which results in
a dilation or “ballooning” of
the vessel. The aneurysm will
grow progressively larger and
eventually may rupture if it is
not diagnosed and treated.
Sometimes, the operation
to repair the damage has to
be carried out by traditional
open surgery. Nowadays more
repairs are carried out by a
‘keyhole’ procedure known as
endovascular aneurysm repair,
or EVAR.
Consultant vascular surgeon
Gabor Libertiny said: “We
treat patients using the EVAR
procedure wherever possible. It’s
safer and less stressful for the
patient, their stay in hospital is
much shorter, and they recover
more quickly.”
Screening technician Natalie
Bird carries out a AAA scan
for Jack Foreman at Abington
Park surgery
INSIGHT ❘ 27
OCTAGON
DESIGN & M A RKE T I NG LT D
Working in partnership
with the NHS
• FT members’ magazines and literature
• Mailing service and socio
economic profiling
• Annual reports, quality reports and
summaries – print runs from as low
as 10 copies
• Advertising funded social care
directories and information
• Advertising funded staff magazines
• Promotional items e.g. lanyards, pens,
balloons, mugs etc
• Ebooks
Britannic Chambers, 8A Carlton Road, Worksop,
Nottinghamshire S80 1PH
01909 478822 | www.octagon.org.uk
| [email protected]
28 ❘ INSIGHT
NEONATAL UNIT ◗
Barclaycard
raise £7,000 for
Gosset Ward
Before David Hargreaves retired from Barclaycard
he wanted to celebrate his time with the Special
Investigation Team and raise as many funds as possible
for Gosset Ward at NGH. David has close connections
with the ward as his wife Bernie works there as a senior
staff nurse. The Specialist Investigation Team spent
over 12 months organising raffles, auctions and cake
sales within the company and raised £3,500. With the
generosity of Barclaycard’s ‘£4£’ fundraising matching
scheme this was doubled to create a grand total of
£7,000 being donated to the neonatal unit.
Theresa (left) and friend Sam (right) present the cheque to Gosset ward sister Wendy
Copson and paediatric consultant Dr Nick Barnes
Theresa Wright and
supporters raise
funds for Gosset
A mum who had six miscarriages before finally giving
birth has thanked Gosset ward staff for saving her
second son’s life by presenting a cheque for over £7,000
to the unit.
Theresa Wright and her partner Ashley Higton endured
the loss of six babies but were overjoyed when son Lewis
came along in 2010. Second son Harrison was born
prematurely at 31 weeks last year, and Theresa started
fundraising for Gosset to repay the ward for the special
care he received there.
Theresa
Wright and
her partner
Ashley
Higton were
overjoyed
when son
Lewis came
along in
2010.
We do have a parents’ bedroom
on the ward which is available for
such, but it is now in urgent need of
upgrading and modernisation.
The funds from both donations are being used to go
towards parents’ accommodation on the ward. Dr Nick
Barnes said: “Towards the end of a baby’s stay, it is
very often helpful and confidence-inspiring for parents if
they are able to spend some time sleeping in hospital
overnight with their baby before he or she is discharged
home. We do have a parents’ bedroom on the ward
which is available for such, but it is now in urgent need
of upgrading and modernisation. To do so will cost
approximately £15,000. These gifts will help us to
completely overhaul the room and provide a modern and
comfortable space which will include a double sofa bed
and en-suite facilities.”
As well as holding an online auction, Theresa also created
a 2012 calendar which solely featured babies that had
been treated on Gosset Ward. This was printed free of
charge for her by local company Belmont Press. The
calendar was sold within the Friends Shops at NGH, and
in Kingsthorpe Asda. Both activities added significantly
to the total fundraising to date of £7,376.71.
Theresa’s friend Sam set up a website to keep people up
to date with the fundraising for Gosset Ward. The site is
widely used by mums to keep in contact with others in
the same position as them, to give new mums information
on what to expect if their baby needs to be kept in on
Gosset ward, and what fundraising events are happening.
Theresa has recently given birth to a third child, a little
girl called Faith. Although a little early, she weighed a
very healthy 8lb.
INSIGHT ❘ 29
◗ CHARITABLE FUND
NGH
ble
ChaFruitnad
Northampton General Hospital
Registered charity no: 1051107
All donations to the hospital
are managed, separately
from NHS finances, by
the trustees of the NGH
Charitable Fund, a registered
charity. If you would like
to make a donation, or be
involved in raising money for
NGH, please contact
our fundraising office on
01604 545857.
Please visit our website
for more fundraising stories
and details of how you
can get involved
www.nghgreenheart.co.uk
Starlight fun
for young
patients
The Nuclear Medicine department
have recently been given a Starlight
Entertainment Centre - a fantastic
new distraction therapy that helps
to banish the boredom and fear of
hospital stays, giving children the
freedom to play what they want,
when they want. With the latest HD
TV, Blu-ray disc player and library,
Nintendo Wii and four portable
Nintendo DS consoles, each Starlight
Fun Centre helps to make children
feel less anxious and worried about
illness and treatment.
Nuclear medicine clinical scientist
Lisa Rowley said: “This is great
news for our
patients, who
are sometimes
required to
lay still for
a number of
hours while
imaging takes
place. That is
a long time to
ask patients
to lay still,
especially for
children, so
this will be
a great help
to keep
them busy.”
30 ❘ INSIGHT
A cheque for £1,225 is presented to the Talbot Butler team and Adele Williams from Breast Care Services by
students Jade Clark, Cleo Devonish and Ketsia Chattell
Brethren fundraise for
Talbot Butler
A group of young girls from
the Brethren Church raised
funds for Talbot Butler
ward in appreciation of the
care given by the staff to
the mum of one of the girls
during her course of chemo
treatment on the ward.
The 12 girls completed the
challenge of running 6-10
miles and raising £1,225
through sponsorship.
Talbot Butler Ward Sister
Jackie Perkins said: “We
are very grateful for this
donation. It means so much
to us when former patients
remember the ward and
want to contribute to its
continuous improvement.”
The funds raised will be
put towards setting up an
emergency assessment bay
on Talbot Butler. This is an
existing bay on the ward that
is being transformed into an
area that will accommodate
emergency patients who
require treatment for any
issues resulting in their
ongoing chemotherapy/
radiotherapy treatment. The
aim is to assist patients to
be able to access emergency
advice and care in a more
appropriate setting other
than A&E and to assess,
investigate, treat and
discharge. This emergency
assessment bay will allow
cancer patients to be
treated in a safe, known and
appropriate area within the
acute setting.
The cost of transforming the
room is £4,500 - with the
additional cost of equipment
taking the full cost of
the area to £20,000. The
Brethren fundraisers have
kindly said that they would
like to continue fundraising
for the ward to help us reach
the target.
CHARITABLE FUND ◗
Former patient digs
deep for Urology
Our refurbished urology
suite, funded by a
significant donation from
a former patient has been
officially opened.
Alfred Staden, aged 90, an
inventor who has designed
shoe manufacturing
equipment which is used
by companies such as Nike
and Reebok, has paid for
the development of three
new treatment rooms and
a reception area in the
urology department.
be able to see what was done.
Mr Staden chose to help the
department after undergoing
a successful operation for
bladder cancer. He said: “I
have been given an extra 12
years of life as a result of my
treatment. I was planning to
leave the department some
money in my will but as I get
older I decided I wanted to
give it now to ensure I would
“I’m glad I have lived long
enough to see this opened.
I am delighted such a small
thing on my part has made
such a dramatic difference,”
Mr Staden added.
Consultant urologist Roger
Kunkler said the new urology
unit would make a huge
difference to patients “for
many years to come”.
Pictured above: Andrew Kunman,
event organiser, Max Armstrong,
KGC Junior Player, Alison McCulloch,
Richard Nicholson, event organiser
Golf Day
raises
£4,000 for
Oncology
Following a fund raising golf
tournament at Kingsthorpe Golf
Club, Richard Nicholson and
fellow organiser Andrew Kunman
presented the oncology department
with an incredible £4,000. The
money will be used to improve the
chemotherapy outpatients area and
the chemotherapy suite.
Alfred Staden and his wife with consultant urologist Roger Kunkler and urology nurse Sally Mora
Did the barmaid’s hair survive
chemo fundraising?
We are very
appreciative
of the
donation
made to the
Oncology
unit.
Customers of the Peacock pub in
Long Buckby helped their landlord and
landlady to raise funds for the NGH
Oncology department. Landlord Dave
Streatfield valued the service he was
given from the team so much whilst
being treated here that he wanted to
give something back. Together with
his partner Sue Cook they organised
lots of different events involving their
customers and staff.
One of the favoured events was betting
on whether one of their barmaids
should have her very long hair cut off.
The locals were pledging money on
“to cut or not to cut”. This event alone
raised over £800. To find out if the
barmaid’s hair survived, why don’t you
visit the Peacock Pub in Long Bucky
and see if you can get involved with
their further fundraising?
Altogether an amazing £4,560.69 was
raised and was very gratefully received
by assistant directorate manager
Pat Calcott. Pat said: “We are very
appreciative of the donation made to
the Oncology unit and we admired the
innovative ideas you all had to raise
such a large amount of money. It is
particularly special when the donation
is from someone that has received
treatment here. These funds will go
towards providing better facilities in the
chemotherapy suite in Oncology.”
This was the third year of the RJN
Charity Cup, which took place
on a soggy summer Saturday. It
was touch and go whether the
competition would go ahead due
to the torrential downpours in the
proceeding weeks, but sun shone
early on and the 38 teams of four
players went out. Despite sharp
outbursts of rain during the day the
teams had a great time completing
the course and arrived in the club
house ready for the refreshments
on offer.
Richard and Andrew also organised
an evening of raffle and auction
delights. Richard, who has cancer,
said: “We had over 70 prizes kindly
donated by Kingsthorpe businesses,
plus football, golf and cricket signed
memorabilia that were auctioned
off. The tournament was a massive
success, a real community event
and I’d like to thank everyone who
got involved.”
The event raised £8,000 in total
with the other £4,000 being
donated to the Kingsthorpe Golf
Club junior development fund.
INSIGHT ❘ 31
STRAFFORD - QUALITY BUILT IN
Strafford Fabrications
specialising nationwide
in the manufacture and
installation of high
quality staircases and handrail
systems for domestic and
commercial projects.
We are able to offer a bespoke
design and manufacturing
service or supply products to
reflect your own ideas whilst
complying with current
building regulations.
Our traditional or modern
staircases can incorporate
a wide variety of materials
including satin and mirror
polished stainless steel, brass
and aluminium. Also glass and
a wide range of hardwoods
are used to compliment our
metalwork. We can also offer a
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full range of colours.
Unit 3 Strafford Industrial Park, Gilroyd Lane, Dodworth, Barnsley S75 3EJ
Tel/Fax 01226 296767 Wayne 07766 943937 Brian 07818 258601
E-mail: [email protected]
www.straffordfabrications.co.uk
32 ❘ INSIGHT
Our experienced fitters
complete installations quickly
and considerately with minimum
disruption to your property
and ensure your complete
satisfaction.
We welcome enquiries from
members of the public as well as
architects and developers and
will be pleased to advise on any
queries you may have.
OLYMPIC VOLUNTEERS ◗
Meet the NGH Games Makers
The highlight of Summer 2012 for many people was the stunning success of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
And NGH staff were among the 70,000 volunteers who gave up their time to ensure that everything ran smoothly.
Fifty thousand people at the Olympics and 20,000 at the Paralympics worked eight million volunteer hours
throughout the summer after being whittled down from 250,000 applicants and going through a million hours
of training for their 800 different roles.
The purple Games Maker uniforms – perhaps most politely described as eye-catching – became synonymous with
London 2012 and were the reward for the volunteers’ long hours and exhausting routine.
At least three members of NGH staff played their part – Sarah Darby, Kathy Franklin and Emma Timms –
and we congratulate them on their contribution to the Games’ success.
Sarah Darby
Kathy Franklin
Emma Timms
Sarah Darby, currently working
in Integrated Surgery and the
Breast care clinic, did 11-hour
stints for 10 days at the
Olympics and five days at the
Paralympics. She was a team
leader within the Press Tribune,
ensuring that all the journalists
had team sheets and match
reports for some of the events.
Clinical nurse specialist Kathy
Franklin spent two weeks at
the Paralympic Games,
supporting the spectators
who had mobility needs. It
involved long days that she
describes as ‘exhausting but
thoroughly enjoyable’.
Emma Timms (Junior sister
in the Cardiac cath lab) had
been a fan of the Olympics
since a child, but never
imagined in a million years
she would get picked to be
a Games Maker. She spent
ten days at the Paralympics,
some of them 17-hour days,
working in the basketball
arena, supporting wheelchair
basketball and rugby (often
known as murderball!).
She said it was ‘the most
amazing experience that I have
ever had’ and that she would
happily do it all over again –
even the early mornings. As our
picture shows, Sarah also got to
meet Seb Coe. She said: “He was
lovely, and took time to shake
hands with all of us.”
Kathy (pictured with six-time
Olympian Tessa Sanderson)
was fortunate to be one of
the 9,000 Games makers
invited to attend and watch
the GB teams parade
down the Mall, and the
celebrations on the Monday
after the games which she
says was a superb end to a
once in a life time experience.
Emma, pictured with Team
Canada and their silver
medal for wheelchair rugby,
was a nurse responsible for
the whole crowd of up to
12,000 people, and met
many of the athletes
who she said were
really inspiring
people. She said
it was a ‘privilege
and an honour to
be chosen’ and is
already planning
to volunteer for
Glasgow 2014,
and maybe even
Rio in 2016.
Charlotte carries
the torch
And before the Games
themselves, NGH health care
assistant Charlotte Preston was
an Olympic torchbearer when
the flame visited the county, and
says she was so proud to take
part in the national relay.
Charlotte, who works in Pre
Op Assessment, said: “My best
friend nominated me, saying
that I love to entertain people
and put a smile on their faces
- but I thought she was joking
when she told me. It was a
real surprise to find that I had
been chosen.”
Charlotte revealed that the
torch is quite heavy and
awkward to carry because it is
top-heavy as well as being hot.
Swapping arms is necessary to
ensure that you can wave as
much as possible. She said: “I
was so proud I can’t even begin
to explain how it felt, and I
still can’t believe it was real. I
watched some of it again on tv
the other day and I wanted to
cry, thinking ‘I was part of that’.
It was magic.”
INSIGHT ❘ 33
◗ CANCER SERVICES
A recent support group meeting in the oncology department
Cancer patients benefit
from support group
National chairman talks to local oesophageal cancer patients
Patient
gatherings
for any
cancers are
increasingly
recognised
as of value
in aiding
recovery and
one feels
less isolated
by being able
to talk about
one’s illness.
34 ❘ INSIGHT
The National Cancer Survivorship
Initiative is a joint initiative by
the Department of Health and
Macmillan Cancer Support. Its aim is
to enable survivors of cancer to have
access to the appropriate care and
support. The NCSI (2010) highlights
the need to allow individuals to
continue ‘as healthy and active a life
as possible, for as long as possible’.
Here at Northampton General the
Northamptonshire Oesophagectomy
Support Group provides support for
patients with oesophageal (gullet)
cancer. The group is patient-led and
was set up by Sue Kells (Macmillan
clinical nurse specialist) in April
2007. Guest speakers who attend
the group have included consultants,
dietitians, welfare rights, ITU nurses
and physiotherapists. The group has
developed a list of members who are
available to talk to others about to
start treatment or at any point of
their care pathway.
At a recent meeting David Kirby
OBE was the guest speaker. David
is the Chairman of the Oesophageal
Patients Association in Birmingham
which he set up following his own
experience of cancer. David feels the
benefits of patient support groups
are immense.
“After recovering from my operation
for oesophageal cancer 32 years
ago I began visiting new patients
and their carers while they were in
hospital, having asked the surgeon
if there was any way I could help
others. To meet someone who had
been through the surgery seemed
to be immensely helpful, and when
patients come to our meetings and
meet so many others it adds to
the positive approach. Speaking to
medical experts at these meetings
in an informal way also adds to
their knowledge. A positive attitude
when faced with such treatment is
enormously helpful and some experts
believe it may enhance the outcome.
“Patient gatherings for any cancers
are increasingly recognised as of
value in aiding recovery and one
feels less isolated by being able to
talk about one’s illness. Doctors
and nurses
also gain from
such meetings
by learning
of patient
experiences
and problemsin private
discussions and
from questionand-answer
sessionsand such
David Kirby OBE
knowledge
may have an
influence on treatments.”
Sue (who co-ordinates the group)
agrees that healthcare professionals
and the service benefit from such
groups. She said: “The group has
supported me in developments for
the service such as producing patient
information leaflets. I would like
to thank the group members and
consultants Guy Finch and David
Hunter for their help in making this
group so successful in its continuing
aim to support patients and carers
following oesophagectomy.”
Hodgkin lymphoma
Trish Hughes, Macmillan Haematology CNS, on treating
young people with Hodgkin lymphoma
Lucy* was 19 when she was
diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma.
It was August and she was due to
go to university the following month
to study biomedical science. Lucy
and her parents were naturally
very distressed.
A diagnosis of cancer in this age
group is the last thing people expect.
Young people are often at university
or college or may even have young
families, so this has a huge impact
on their lives. They are often very
frightened and it is my role to support
them through this experience.
booklet written especially for young
people with cancer called I’m still
me. You can order these for free
from be.macmillan.org.uk or call
0800 500 800.
* Name has been changed
Reprinted by kind permission from
Macmillan Voice magazine
As a key worker for young people
like Lucy, I provide psychological
support and information for the
young person and their parents. This
includes spending time explaining the
diagnosis and treatment options.
Ongoing support
I kept in regular telephone
contact with Lucy while she was
undergoing tests before commencing
treatment. I also contacted her
tutor to organise for her place at
university to be deferred.
As a key
worker
for young
people,
I provide
psychological
support and
information
for the young
person and
their parents
Lucy was given chemotherapy by
haematology clinic staff, who also
played a part in providing the holistic
care for Lucy. At the end of treatment
I supported Lucy with her transition
back to university by organising
some work experience for her with
our laboratory staff. Lucy did this
for a few months after completing
treatment and thoroughly enjoyed
the experience. I saw Lucy in clinic
recently and she has just completed
her first year of university and
remains very well.
Survivorship
When a young person has finished
treatment for Hodgkin lymphoma
there is regular follow-up through
the haematology department. In
the past I have had an informal
chat with patients, however I am
about to commence a holistic needs
assessment clinic for people at the end
of treatment, where we will discuss
concerns and make a care plan.
Related information
Macmillan has a booklet about
Hodgkin lymphoma. It also has a
Trish Hughes, Macmillan
Haematology clinical nurse
specialist at Northampton
General Hospital
Fact file
Hodgkin lymphoma is a cancer of
the lymphatic system. Around 1,870
people are diagnosed with it in the
UK each year.
Symptoms
These can include a painless
swelling of a lymph node
(lymphadenopathy), night sweats,
fevers, fatigue and weight loss and
itching. In some cases there is no
visible swelling and a young person
may present at the GP with vague
symptoms such as itching.
Diagnosis
A lymph node biopsy is needed to
confirm the diagnosis. Other staging
tests include a CT scan or a PET
scan, a bone marrow test and
blood tests.
Treatment
Depending on the stage of the
lymphoma, treatment is usually
chemotherapy. If the lymphoma is
localised to one group of lymph
nodes radiotherapy can be given.
Hello from
Radio Nene
Valley
We are on a bit of a high at
Radio Nene Valley. We have just
celebrated forty years on the air.
The new Hospedia System means
more patients than ever get a
reliable, high quality stereo signal
to enjoy our programmes. New
volunteers are being trained and
so we have now returned to our
flagship After Eight request show
going out every weeknight. Our
teams of volunteers go out on the
wards to say hello and ask about
records to play for our audience;
we’ve got a big library of CDs and
vinyl and we like to show it off.
After Eight is just a part, although
a very important one, of our
hospital radio station. You may
not know that we transmit twentyfour hours a day, seven days a
week using our Raduga computer
system. Details are in our Smile
Magazine that you’ll find around
the hospital; please pick up a
copy and thumb through it, the
publishers and advertisers will
love you if you do.
Something has changed for
the worse over forty years; it is
nowhere near as easy to get
finance. We try to be frugal
but it costs £3,000 a year
to run our little station. The
commercialisation of charities
and the lotteries have pulled the
rug away from bedpushes and
shaking the tin so now we rely on
grants and sponsors. If you can
help please let us know and we’ll
follow up any lead you give us.
David Oliver
Programme Organiser
Radio Nene Valley
Email [email protected]
co.uk
Telephone 01604 545454
INSIGHT ❘ 35
◗ NOTICEBOARD
EDINBURGH FRINGE 2012 JOKES
DO SOMETHING AMAZING…
“You know who really gives kids a bad name?
Posh and Becks.” – Stewart Francis
ANNOUNCEMENTS
HOSPITAL CAROL
SERVICE
“Last night me and my girlfriend watched three
DVDs back to back. Luckily I was the one facing
the telly.” – Tim Vine
Sunday 9 December at 3.00pm
“I was raised as an only child… which really
annoyed my sister.” – Will Marsh
in the Hospital Board Room (Area R)
with the Northampton Male Voice Choir
“You know you’re working class when your TV is
bigger than your book case.” – Rob Beckett
A service of Traditional Carols
and Readings
“I’m good friends with 25 letters of the alphabet
… I don’t know Y.” – Chris Turner
All are welcome.
Refreshments and Mince Pies
“I took part in the sun tanning Olympics – I just
got Bronze.” – Tim Vine
CAROL SINGING
AROUND THE WARDS
“I saw a documentary on how ships are kept
together. Riveting!” – Stewart Francis
“I waited an hour for my starter so I complained.
It’s not rocket salad.” – Lou Sanders
“My mum’s so pessimistic, that if there was an
Olympics for pessimism … she wouldn’t fancy her
chances.” – Nish Kumar
SUDOKU
Fill the grid so that each row, column and 3x3
block contains the numbers 1 to 9.
96% of us rely on the other 4% to give blood.
Please don’t leave it to someone else.
Who can give blood?
Most people can give blood. If you are generally
in good health, age 17 to 65 (if it’s your first
time) and weigh at least 7st 12Ib you can donate.
You can give blood every 16 weeks, that’s
approximately every four months.
For more information please visit www.blood.co.uk
The next donor sessions at St Giles Church
Rooms, St Giles Terrace, Northampton
NN1 2BN are:
Monday 03 December
10.00am to 12.30pm; 2.00pm to 5.00pm
Friday 14 December
1.00pm to 3.30pm; 4.30pm to 7.30pm
Monday 17 December
1.00pm to 3.30pm; 4.30pm to 7.30pm
Friday 22 February 2013
10.30am to 12.30pm; 2.00pm to 5.00pm
Christmas Eve
Monday 24 December at 7.00pm.
Please come and sing with us around the
wards of the Hospital.
Meet in the Cliftonville Restaurant
at 6.45pm
Refreshments and Mince Pies afterwards.
RETIRED (or soon to be?) NHS Retirement
Fellowship (Northampton Branch) meets on
first Wednesday of each month at 2.15pm at
Northampton East Salvation Army, Northampton,
NN3 8EZ. Range of speakers and activities. Open
to ex NHS staff, together with spouse or partner.
Please contact the chairman Mrs Pat Oliver on
01604 839085.
To advertise in Insight,
please contact us on
01909 478822
BACK ISSUES of Insight are available online at
www.northamptongeneral.nhs.uk - go to About Us
> Documents and Publications
Come and join us
By becoming a member of Northampton General Hospital you can have a say in the way your hospital develops, and you can be sure
your voice is heard. You may want to simply sign up for our members’ newsletter, or you may want to attend meetings and local focus
groups, or even stand for election to become a member of our Governors’ Council. The choice is yours.
All you need to do is fill in the form and return it to the Freepost address below; or you can call us on 01604 523894, or email us at
[email protected] . We look forward to hearing from you.
Please return your form to this Freepost address – there is no need for a stamp: Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust,
Membership Office, Freepost RRBA-RGGA-TEEL, Cliftonville, Northampton NN1 5BD.
Title and name .....................................................................................................................................
Address .................................................................................................................................................
....................................................................................................Postcode ............................................
Telephone . ............................................................................................................................................
Email address ......................................................................................................................................
Please write clearly in BLOCK CAPITALS, thank you
OUR COMMUNITY WAYFINDING ◗
Find your way around the hospital
Follow the signs to the
area letter, then look for
local signs to the ward or
department you need
DEPARTMENTS
D Accident & Emergency
L Antenatal Assessment Unit
K Antenatal Outpatients
K Audiology
W Billing House
H Biochemistry
K Blood Taking Unit
R Centre for Elderly Medicine
E Chapel
D Chest Clinic
L Child Development Centre
K Children’s Hearing Clinic
K Children’s Outpatients
U Chiropody
J Cripps Centre
K Day Surgery Unit
K Dermatology
J Diabetes Centre
E Discharge Lounge
C Echocardiography
K ENT
L Eye Unit
B Forrest Centre
D Fracture Clinic
R Genitourinary Medicine
K Gynaecology Outpatients
R Haematology (temporary location)
D Hand Therapy
C Heart Centre
Q Human Resources
B Integrated Surgery
W Limb Centre
F Main Theatres Admissions Unit
A Manfield day case
L Maternity day unit
R Maxillofacial Unit
K Medical Outpatients
H Mortuary and Chapel of Rest
J Neurophysiology
E Nuclear Medicine
N Oncology Centre
S Pain Relief Clinic
R PALS and Bereavement Service
G Pathology
K Pre-operative Assessment
D Radiology (X-ray)
D Rapid Access Chest Pain
J Research and Development
F Respiratory Laboratory
F RESTART
C Rheumatology
W Sunnyside
Q Training & Development
WARDS
E Abington (Orthopaedic) 545982, 544945
C Allebone (Cardiac, respiratory, medicine)
545804, 545336
S Althorp (Elderly medicine) 544410, 544415
L Balmoral (Maternity postnatal) †
545434, 544955
D Becket (Respiratory) 545981, 544972
C Benham (Emergency assessment - male)
545537, 545337
R Brampton (Elderly medicine) 544460, 544462
A Cedar (Trauma & orthopaedic) 545553, 545353
A Collingtree (Medical) 523870, 523780
A Collingtree (Surgical) 523944, 523939
C Creaton (General medicine) 545539, 545339
M Disney (Children’s) † 545518, 545318
C Dryden (Cardiology) 545540, 545340
C Eleanor (General medicine) 545804
D Emergency Assessment Unit (Female) †
545613, 545304
D Finedon (Renal) 523530, 523560
M Gosset (Neonatal) † 545520, 545320
A Hawthorn (Orthopaedic) 545551, 545351
S Head & neck 545509
C High Dependency Unit (HDU) † 545544, 545344
R Holcot Stroke Unit † 544430, 544432
C Intensive Therapy Unit (ITU) † 545542, 545342
S Knightley (General medicine) 544620
M Paddington (Children’s) † 545319, 545519
M Paddington HDU (Children’s) † 545836
L Robert Watson (Maternity) † 544928, 544819
A Rowan (General surgical) 545549, 545349
L Singlehurst (Ophthalmology) 545483, 545083
S Spencer (Gynaecology) 545525
M Sturtridge (Labour ward) † 545058,
545426, 523629
M Sturtridge HDU † 545055
G Talbot Butler (Oncology & Haematology)
545534, 545334
S Victoria (Elderly Medicine) 545326
A Willow (Vascular) 545548, 545348
Visiting 2.00pm – 4.30pm; 6.00pm – 8.00pm unless
marked with † (please check with these wards)
INFORMATION
Northampton General Hospital, Cliftonville,
Northampton NN1 5BD
Tel: 01604 634700
www.northamptongeneral.nhs.uk
D Reception
Cliftonville. Open Mon-Fri 9.00am – 6.00pm.
Dial 0 from any corridor phone and ask for
“operator” when prompted.
E Restaurant
Hospital Street, open Mon-Fri 7.15am – 7.00pm;
Sat-Sun 7.15am – 6.00pm.
D Café Royale
Main reception, Cliftonville, open Mon-Fri
8.00am – 7.00pm.
WRVS shops
E South entrance, open Mon-Fri 7.00am – 8.00pm;
Sat, Sun, bank holidays 10.00pm – 4.00pm.
T Billing Road entrance, open Mon-Fri
9.00am – 4.00pm.
Buggy service
Guiding and transport service provided by Friends of
NGH volunteers Mon–Fri 8.30am – 4.00pm.
Dial 88 then 4501 then enter your extension number
to request the buggy.
D Travel office
For car parking permits, and travel info. Open MonThurs 9.00am – 4.30pm; Fri 9.00am – 4.00pm.
01604 545966 or 544600.
E Bank
Cash dispensers in lift lobby near south entrance
and near Billing Road entrance
E Chapel
Open to all. For details of services or to contact the
chaplains, call 01604 545773.
INSIGHT ❘ 37
Notes from
Christmas Past
From the Archive
Christmas 1925 on the children’s ward
at Manfield Orthopaedic Hospital
◗ A Christmas party for the
crippled children in 1908 was held
in the Guildhall, Northampton.
Each child received a large
cake, orange, warm garment
and a Christmas card from the
Mayor. The evening ended with a
cinematograph display by Messrs.
Cobb and Collings. This event was
organised by the Northampton
County Crippled Fund (NCCCF)
who at that time were caring for
almost 400 children in the town.
◗ Christmas at NGH in 1912
Local residents and
organisations would contribute
generously at Christmas each
year with items for the patients
and staff, which included:
◗ Dolls, toys, scrapbooks, sweets
and crackers for the children.
◗ Turkeys for the wards
◗ Evergreens for the
Christmas decorations
◗ Gifts of money for trees
and entertainment
The nurses were not left out
with gifts of fruit, chocolates and
theatre tickets.
Fiftieth anniversary for
Cobalt-60 Unit
November 2012 marks the 50th anniversary
of a major step forward in providing
radiotherapy treatment at this hospital.
It had taken 19 years of planning, led by
consultant radiologist Dr Benjamin Jolles, to
achieve the goal.
The building which was to locate the
Cobalt-60 radioactive capsule, the source
required for radiotherapy, was built at a cost
of £120,000. The room itself had concrete
walls over a metre thick. The observation
window through which the radiographer
would observe the patient had a frame of
two square feet and the special glass cost
over £1,000.
On 12 October 1962 the cobalt capsule
arrived from Harwell Atomic Research
Centre. The capsule measuring around 10mm
square was encased in three and a half
tonnes of lead. Over the lifetime of the Cobalt
unit the capsule would need to be replaced as
it would decay with use.
Sir George Godber, from the Ministry of
Health, officially opened the new unit with
a key handed to him by Mr WJ Jobson,
architect for the Oxford Regional Hospital
Board. Mr Talbot Butler paid tribute to the
◗ Extract from a Christmas Show
programme in 1928 at NGH:
WANTED AT ONCE PROBATIONER
cated
“Capable and well edu
brows
eye
young lady, no hair or
st
Mu
.
uty
bea
of
or any points
ber
ub
iar
ind
s,
nce
ere
ref
have good
e.
enc
sci
con
feelings and cast iron
ir
the
–
ply
ap
Angels need not
way.”
wings would be in the
The Cobalt unit being delivered in 1962
Dr Jolles and others at the official opening
generosity of the Barratt family who had
donated £70,000 for building the unit. This
sum was part of the Barratt bequest of
£285,000 left by Mrs Alice Barratt, who died
in 1958. He was quoted as saying, “Blessed be
the name of William and Alice Barratt.” The
Archdeacon of Northampton, the Venerable
Goodchild spoke a prayer of dedication for
the new unit.
The Cobalt-60 unit was removed in 1993
and replaced by the new linear accelerator
in 1994.
The first reference to radium at the
hospital was in a house committee report
in 1914 when radium applicators worth
£750 were purchased, and rules laid
down for their use. Protection for the
operators was not discussed until 1921.
In 1935 radium with a value of over £300
was lost, it was assumed it was thrown
away in the dressings. Instructions were
issued for stricter recordings of usage,
patients’ names and wards they were sent
to following treatment. In WW2 a deep
bore hole was made behind the theatres
to lower a canister containing the radium,
this was a precautionary measure in case
of bombing raids.
Learn more about the history of the hospitals in Northamptonshire by visiting the Historical Archive at NGH.
Open on Wednesday mornings 8am to 1pm
Telephone: 01604 544868 Email: [email protected]
38 ❘ INSIGHT
INSIGHT ❘ 39
Bah humbug!
Win free theatre tickets
A Christmas Carol
By Charles Dickens,
adapted by Neil Duffield
The most famous festive tale of all time is brought to life in
a charming new version for all the family, in celebration of
Charles Dickens’ 200th birthday.
For a chance to win a family ticket* to see A Christmas
Carol on Saturday 29 December 1.15pm, answer the five
questions below.
Wealthy miser Ebenezer Scrooge is all set to greet Christmas
Day with his traditional “bah humbug”! Not this year… the
Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future have other ideas
and appear on Christmas Eve to show Scrooge the consequences
of his bad-tempered ways.
Send your entry to arrive by Friday 21 December to
[email protected] – or by post to Insight Editor,
NGH, Cliftonville, Northampton NN1 5BD.
Please note that your entry must include a daytime
telephone number.
Featuring some of the best-loved Dickensian characters
including Jacob Marley, Bob Cratchit and his son Tiny Tim, this
heart-warming adaptation of the timeless classic is housed in
the exquisite Victorian Royal auditorium and is directed by Gary
Sefton, who was behind the hilarious, critically acclaimed Diary
Of A Nobody and Travels With My Aunt for Royal & Derngate.
Wed 28 November – Sun 06 January
Tickets £21 - £10
For more information and to buy tickets for A Christmas Carol
and other productions at Royal & Derngate, call the Box Office
on 01604 624811 or visit www.royalandderngate.co.uk
1 Who wrote A Christmas Carol?
2 What number should you ring to find out more about
being a stem cell donor?
3 Where should you meet on Christmas Eve for carol
singing around the NGH wards?
4 When was Global Handwashing Day this year?
5 How many of the five hospitals in the Healthier Together
review will still have an A&E and maternity unit following
the review?
*A family ticket is equivalent to four tickets. Max two adults.
◗ The winner of the ‘Radio Times’ tickets in our last competition was Patricia Morgan of Boughton Green, Northampton.
Designed & Published by Octagon Design & Marketing Ltd, Britannic Chambers, 8a Carlton Road, Worksop, Notts. S80 1PH Tel: 01909 478822
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