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Crawley woman among winning nurses at hospital awards

When the Queen Victoria Hospital asked its patients (past and present) to nominate staff they felt went the extra mile for them during their treatment or appointments, they were overwhelmed with the response.

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Pictured: Breast reconstruction nurse specialists Rebecca and Pam pictured receiving their award from Jo Thomas, Director of Nursing and Quality at Queen Victoria Hospital

The ask was for the hospital’s annual patient experience award, which this year generated over 50 nominations. Among the winners were Pam Golton from East Grinstead and Rebecca Spencer from Crawley – breast reconstruction nurse specialists at the hospital.

The duo received an amazing eight nominations from patients who commended Pam and Rebecca’s support during their reconstruction journey following breast cancer Queen Victoria Hospital is a leading centre for reconstructive breast surgery in the South East, performed either at the same time as a mastectomy or after all treatment has been completed. Pam and Rebecca are on hand to help patients throughout their journey and for however long their treatment takes.

Comments from the nominations included:

“All through my journey they have been amazing, going beyond the care and support I have ever experienced in any other NHS trust. They made me realise that I was normal and treated me as a friend.”

And

“they are kind, caring, good listeners, totally dedicated, professional and give you good honest advice and reassurance if you are worried about anything. Above all they just want to ensure you’re ok. I can honestly say I am so lucky to have been referred to QVH and been given Pam and Rebecca as my breast reconstruction nurse specialists. I really don’t know how I would have coped without them.”

Their win was announced on the night of the annual QVH Staff Awards by a special film one of their patients, Linda, helped create, explaining in her own words why she was driven to nominate the duo. You can watch it now on YouTube:

Commenting on their award Pam said:

“I was really thrilled to find out I had been nominated for an award and it was even more special to find out we had won. Rebecca and I are very much a team and it is lovely to be recognised for what in essence is “just doing our job”, but what a job! Helping ladies navigate what could potentially be the most emotional time of their lives is a privilege and one that we both take very seriously. Having recognition in this way encourages us to continue to strive to improve our practice and continue to make a difference to those we care for”.

Rebecca continued:

“I was so delighted we won the outstanding patient experience award, what a wonderful surprise. It is lovely to hear how we have made a difference to the lives of patients, and humbling to see how much we are appreciated. Patients are the focus of everything we do and it is so lovely to be recognised. To hear that I have helped women through a really difficult time in their lives is really rewarding and it makes me feel very proud.”

Jo Thomas, Director of Nursing and Quality at Queen Victoria Hospital (QVH) explains why the awards are so important:

“We hope that every member of staff makes the experience of our patients a positive one. But we know some of our staff are extra special. Pam and Rebecca are both very deserving winners and we’d like to congratulate them both and all of our staff who were nominated – it’s a real testament to the positive impact our staff make when patients take the time to contact us.”

Queen Victoria Hospital would like to thank everyone who took time to nominate members of staff for the award and would encourage patients to continue passing on their feedback through its Patient Advice and Liaison service (PALS) by email at qvhpals@nhs.net, or its Facebook and Twitter channels.

Health & Wellbeing

Local NHS urging locals to get jab as flu rates shoot up 85%

The local NHS is urging people to get their flu jab and highlighting treatment advice, after flu cases shot up by 85 per cent within the space of a week in England.

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Health bosses warn this winter’s influenza outbreak is now beginning to take hold and urging those eligible to get their flu jab now – GP consultation rate in the South East for flu like illnesses has risen from 10.3 per 100,000 to 14.2 in just one week, which is adding more pressure on local health services.

Flu symptoms come on very quickly and can be a very unpleasant illness with symptoms including fever, stuffy nose dry cough, sore throat, aching muscles and joints and extreme tiredness, which can often last several days.

Flu can’t be treated with antibiotics – flu is caused by viruses and antibiotics only work against bacteria.

Those who get the flu will get better more quickly if they:

  • Get plenty of rest and sleep
  • Make sure they keep warm
  • Take paracetamol or ibuprofen
  • Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration

Gareth Howells, Deputy Director of Urgent Care and Systems Resilience for Central Sussex and East Surrey Commissioning Alliance-North, said

The best form of protection against flu is to get the vaccine, and to practice good respiratory and hand hygiene. It isn’t too late to get the flu vaccine so make sure you take up the offer if you’re eligible, to protect yourself and vulnerable people around you.

“We are advising those who already have flu-like symptoms to rest, drink plenty of water and take paracetamol where needed.”

In order to reduce the impact of flu on local NHS services, residents and visitors to the city are being asked to make sure they use the right service for their medical needs, freeing up emergency care for those most in need.

The NHS Minor Injuries Unit Queen Victoria Hospital and Horsham Hospital are available for treatment without appointments; the Urgent Treatment Centre at Crawley Hospital is also available 24 hours a day, NHS 111 is available all day every day and www.nhs.uk is available to check symptoms online around the clock.

A pharmacist can also help with flu, offering treatment advice and recommend flu remedies, and give guidance on giving medicines to children. No appointment necessary to see a local pharmacist and most have private consultation areas, and will say if you need further medical attention. fffffffffffff

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