An Update from our Hospitals

Content originally from Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust

Health Secretary Matt Hancock visits the Trust

The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock visited the Trust this week and spent an evening at our Basildon site. Mr. Hancock first visited the COVID-19 vaccination centre. Here, he met staff who were receiving their vaccines and learnt about our vaccination programme.

Mr. Hancock then joined staff in frontline areas including the Emergency Department, respiratory (Burstead) ward and the critical care centre on Frederick Banting ward.

A variety of admin, clinical and domestic staff explained the measures taken to provide excellent care for our patients during a very difficult and challenging period. The Minister was also taken to the Health and Wellbeing hub, where members of staff outlined the importance of a quiet space to relax and recharge.

Clare Panniker, Chief executive of Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“I would like to thank the Secretary of State for taking the time to visit our Trust. We were really pleased for the opportunity to show him how dedicated and compassionate our staff are and how through working with our partners we’ve been able to provide the best possible care for patients during an incredibly difficult time.”

COVID-19 vaccines begin at Broomfield and Southend hospitals

We are now operating vaccination hubs at Broomfield Hospital and Southend Hospital, in addition to the hub at Basildon Hospital which opened on 8 December 2020. In line with guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, all are offering vaccinations to those aged over 70, while we are pleased to have been offering vaccines to all our staff since 15 January.

The large increase in cases we’ve seen and the emergence of a new variant of the virus show that we cannot let our guard down now. Even those who have received a vaccine still need to follow the government’s ‘Stay at Home’ guidance, and the ‘Hands. Face. Space’ rules.

You can see the latest information on the Trust’s COVID-19 vaccination programme here.

Outpatient activity guidance

To concentrate our resources on patients with COVID-19, we’ve reduced footfall for outpatients in our hospitals.

  • Our current outpatient activity will continue either by telephone or virtual appointments at all sites
  • Patients needing a face-to-face appointment, where possible, will be seen at one of our green sites based on clinical urgency
  • ‘Green zones’ have been identified across all sites to allow this to happen.

Urgent and suspected cancer appointments

  • The use of green zones (areas in our hospitals with no COVID-19 activity) as well as capacity within independent hospitals locally has allowed us to prioritise clinically urgent and suspected cancer patients and still offer appointments, diagnostics and treatment
  • Patients with suspected cancer must attend essential appointments that are necessary to diagnose or treat.

Medical director receives MBE in New Year’s Honours

Dr. Tayyab Haider, the medical director at Basildon Hospital, has been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours for his services to the NHS, including during the COVID-19 response.

Dr. Haider said:  “I am delighted and very proud to receive this honour, which is a recognition of the extraordinary hard work of the staff at Basildon Hospital, and across Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust, while responding to COVID-19.”

New year, new student nurses

We’ve welcomed almost 200 student nurses to the Trust, ahead of them beginning their work placements in March.

It’s one of the largest ever number of student nurses from Anglia Ruskin University (ARU). Students will be based at Basildon Hospital, Southend Hospital, Broomfield Hospital and within the community.

Liz Summers, professional and commissioned education lead at Basildon Hospital, said: “These students are training to be our nurses of the future, and at induction we reassure them we are here to support them throughout their studies and will be looking to recruit many of them in the final year of their degree.”

Electronic observation system goes live at Maternity ward

Patientrack is now live on Basildon’s Maternity ward, replacing the paper-based process used to monitor the health of patients.

Patientrack is already widely used across Basildon hospital. It has been quick to deliver and will make a real difference to providing the best possible care.

Shirley Jones, Interim Director of Midwifery, said: “Patientrack has helped to bring our record-keeping and monitoring of care processes up to date with the latest digital technology. It has allowed us to transform our entire process quickly, and we are already feeling and seeing the benefits.”

Hospital volunteers play their part in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout

A group of over 20 dedicated volunteers are doing their bit to help the COVID-19 vaccine sessions run smoothly at Southend Hospital.

The volunteers were keen to help ease the pressure on hard-working hospital staff. They are helping marshal the car park, register people when they arrive and also reassure those receiving injections before and after their vaccinations.

Andrew Gush, a volunteer from Westcliff, said: “Everyone has just really appreciated our help, whether that’s people getting the vaccine or hospital staff in the vaccine hub. We are helping to keep things moving so that people are seen as soon as possible.”

Better service for patients thanks to improvement works

A range of improvement works are underway at Southend, Basildon and Broomfield hospitals to help tackle the pressures of the COVID-19 pandemic and people arriving at their local hospital needing emergency care.  

Last year it was announced that Southend Hospital was receiving £9.7 million and Basildon and Broomfield Hospitals £4.8 million, between them, to help improve services and facilities for winter and beyond.

You can find details about the new facilities and buildings taking shape here.