News 2014 Jul - Dec
Dozens of teddy bears have been donated to the children’s ward at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital by the Devonshire Freemasons to help brighten up their stay in hospital.
The Freemasons regularly donate teddies to Bramble Ward through their Devonshire Teddy for Loving Care (TLC) campaign. Over the last six years the campaign has seen approximately 28,500 teddy bears donated to the four major hospitals, children’s hospices and the crown courts in Devon.
Posted on: 24 December 2014 | Posted in: 2014 Jul - Dec
The Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital is urging anyone who has suffered from symptoms of the highly infectious Norovirus bug to stay away from the hospital until they have been free of the symptoms for at least 48 hours.
Cases of Norovirus, which causes vomiting and diarrhoea and is more common in the winter months, have been rising at the RD&E over the Christmas and New Year period, placing extra pressure on hospital bed capacity at a very busy time for the hospital.
At the current time the hospital has closed Lowman and Okement wards and isolated areas in three other wards – Torridge, Abbey and Mere - where Norovirus is either confirmed or suspected. As a result around 10 beds are not available for use at a time when the hospital is dealing with a high number of acutely ill patients who need to stay in hospital. Further suspected cases of Norovirus among new admissions and in some visitors are also being investigated.
Posted on: 2 January 2015 | Posted in: 2014 Jul - Dec
A ground-breaking genomic medicine project, which aims to establish England as a world leader in the fight against cancer and rare disease, will be led in the South West by the Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust (RD&E) working in partnership with other hospitals across Somerset, Devon and Cornwall.
The RD&E has been selected today by NHS England (Monday 22 December) as one of 11 centres in England that will jointly lead its 100,000 Genomes Project.
The project involves collecting and decoding 100,000 human genomes – complete sets of people’s genes – that will enable scientists and doctors to understand more about specific conditions.
Posted on: 22 December 2014 | Posted in: 2014 Jul - Dec
Christmas came early for the children and teenagers on Bramble Ward at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital when they received a special visit from the stars of Exeter City Football Club.
With the help of Build-a-Bear, the players from the club gave out dozens of bears, signed merchandise and other presents to the young patients to help bring some Christmas cheer to the ward. The players who visited were Scot Bennett, Pat Baldwin, Matt Oakley, Matt Grimes, David Noble, Ryan Harley, Clinton Morrison and Christy Pym.
Posted on: 19 December 2014 | Posted in: 2014 Jul - Dec
Graeme Smith, a Maintenance Assistant from the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust Estates Department who is well known around Heavitree Hospital for his successful charity book stall, has just published his very first novel - 'The Awakening of Abraham Brown'.
Over the past five years Graeme has raised over £10,000 for charity by wheeling out his charity trolley, stacked mainly with books and some bric-a-brac, into the main entrance foyer of Heavitree Hospital. Patients and staff kindly donate items to the stall each week, which supports two main charities, the Devon Air Ambulance and Children's Hospice South West.
Mums and babies from support group SNUG (Supporting Neonatal Users & Graduates) were joined by Royal Devon and Exeter hospital staff to celebrate their first Christmases at the SNUG Christmas Party.
SNUG is a charitable organisation that supports Devon based Neonatal families and works closely with staff from the RD&E’s Neonatal Unit.
The party was held in the Centre for Women’s Health, where staff from the Neonatal unit were able to catch up with babies and their parents who have now left the unit to see how they are getting on.
David Cameron, Michael Caines and Rick Stein are just some of the big names who have provided recipes for ‘Intensive Food’, a charity cookbook in aid of the RD&E’s Intensive Care Unit Trust Fund.
The book has been compiled by the ICU team, led by Consultant Nurse Carole Boulanger and ICU Matron Marie Toghill.
The recipe book contains a collection of over 300 recipes from ICU staff, friends and special celebrity guests. Proceeds from sales of the book will go towards providing extra comfort for patients and their relatives during their stay on the unit.
Kevin Hooper, a patient at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, has donated £1000 to the MacLeod Diabetes & Endocrine Centre (MDEC) for the third year running to say thank you to staff there that have cared for him.
In the past, Kevin found living with Type 1 Diabetes challenging and was not taking his insulin regularly. However thanks to the commitment and support from staff at the diabetes centre he started getting the regular treatment he needed. In recent years Kevin has come to appreciate the help RD&E staff have given him and decided to give something back
An Exeter-based charity that aims to help homeless people out of hospital and into safe accommodation is to receive a £68,602 cash boost from the NHS.
Community Housing Aid will receive the money from the RD&E for their project ‘Bay6’ after the hospital applied successfully for a slice of the NHS Regional Innovation Fund, the winners of which were announced today by NHS England.
Bay6’s aim is that no-one should be discharged from hospital as homeless and it has been working closely with the RD&E for several months. The cash will allow it to continue its innovative work with the hospital until April next year.
The collaborative work of research and clinical staff at the Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust was recently celebrated at their inaugural Clinical Trials Symposium. The event saw around 70 members of staff who are involved in clinical research across the Trust gather in the Peninsula Medical School for an update on the progress of the hospital’s clinical trials work.
Clinical trials are part of clinical research and are at the heart of all medical advances. They look at new ways to prevent, detect, or treat disease such as trailing new drugs, procedures or devices. At the RD&E there are currently over 500 clinical research projects taking place, with over 4000 patients recruited to projects in 2013-14.
The Medical Imaging Team at the Royal Devon and Exeter hospital have been recognised for providing high quality radiology services to patients by achieving the UKAS Imaging Service Accreditation (ISAS) .
They have become one of just 16 NHS Trusts across the country to have been granted the official accreditation by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) on behalf of the Royal College of Radiologists and the College of Radiographers.
Registered Nurses are being offered the opportunity to find out more about what it’s like to work at the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust at a recruitment open day on Saturday 8th November.
The event, which takes place between 9.30am – 3pm in the Research, Innovation, Learning and Development (RILD) building on the Wonford site, will give prospective employees the chance to learn more about the Trust and the opportunities on offer.
The Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust provides hospital services to over 400,000 people in Exeter and East and Mid Devon, and is recognised nationally and internationally for excellence in a number of specialist fields.
The Bishop of Plymouth joined staff at the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust for a ‘Blessing our Vocations’ service to celebrate the many vocations and job roles that make up the life of the hospital.
The RD&E is made up of many people performing different job roles and occupations, which together make the hospital a place of care and compassion for patients and their families. The ecumenical service was designed to mark the importance of all these vocations in the hospital and to give thanks for the many committed staff members and volunteers who work for the Trust.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, has today (Thursday October 23) visited the RD&E’s and University of Exeter’s RILD building, a centre of excellence in healthcare innovation. During his visit he announced a new £150 million investment into technologies to revolutionise research into disease.
Mr Osborne revealed that £1.6 million of the Medical Research Council (MRC) cash pot will come to the University of Exeter Medical School, to fund a state-of-the-art facility that will unlock some of the hidden secrets of the genome. It is part of an overall investment by the partnership led by the MRC which totals £230 million.
A team of Nurse Practitioners at the West of England Eye Unit (WEEU) have reached an important milestone of 10,000 injections to treat patients with a chronic eye condition. The Exeter unit is the first in the country to have trained Nurse Practitioners to perform this type of eye surgery for patients with Wet macular degeneration, and the innovation has brought benefits for staff and patients.
Wet macular degeneration occurs when abnormal blood vessels leak into the retina and is a common cause of poor vision in the elderly. The condition can be treated with the injection of a drug directly into the eye under local anaesthetic. This injection needs repeating regularly to sustain the effect, which was increasing the workload of the WEEU.
The Exeter Pulmonary Fibrosis Group have been blowing bubbles to show their support for this years’ World IPF Week (28th Sept – 5th Oct). The support group, who meet regularly at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, are aiming to raise awareness of the chronic and progressive lung condition Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF).
IPF is a disease that causes a gradual scarring of the lungs. It is becoming increasingly common, and now kills over 5,000 people a year. However, awareness remains low, and there is no known cause or cure. As a result, the disease acts with often-devastating speed: barely half of people diagnosed with IPF are still alive three years later, and just one in five will survive five years.
Blowing bubbles may seem like a simple thing to do when you have healthy lungs, but for a patient with IPF, this activity could be very challenging.
The RD&E is among the top 20% of acute Trusts in England across a range of key cancer care patient experience indicators, according to national survey results published today.
Some 94% of patients rated their care at the RD&E ‘excellent/very good’ – a result that is up 5% since 2012 and places the RD&E in the top 20% highest scoring Trusts for this indicator.
More than 1,000 adult cancer care patients from different cancer groups gave opinions on their experience of care at the RD&E in a national survey by NHS England.
Their opinions were analysed and the results compared with those gathered in all other acute Trusts in England providing cancer care.
Strike action by some health unions is planned to take place between 7am-11am on Monday October 13. We would like to reassure our patients, families and carers that the Trust has robust contingency plans in place to ensure that emergency care and our normal rigorous standards of patient safety remain fully protected during this period of industrial action. Please note there may also be a picket line outside the hospital between 7am-11am but this will not hinder access to the hospital.
Action may temporarily disrupt some of our non-critical services on the day and potentially lead to delays for some patients. We advise patients and their families who have appointments and/or pre-booked treatment at the RD&E on October 13 to contact the department they are booked in with to confirm their arrangements before attending.
Patients at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital are benefiting from a brand new CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation) machine thanks to local charity HeartSWell. The £10,000 AutoPulse machine has been donated by the Plymouth based organisation to give patients a better chance of surviving a cardiac arrest.
AutoPulse is a portable cardiac support pump that provides automated chest compressions to keep blood pumping around your body if you have a cardiac arrest. The machine delivers consistent and high quality chest compressions, whilst freeing medical staff up to perform other lifesaving duties.
Physiotherapists at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital in Heavitree have raised over £200 for Hospiscare by holding their ‘Big Devon Bake Off’.
Inspired by their love of cake, the department pulled out all the stops to host a baking competition for the charity’s September event, presenting an impressive range of baked confections for judges Liz Jacobs and Jane Middleton.
Everything from lemon drizzle to apple strudel was put forward by staff in the hope of claiming the converted ‘star baker’ title. In the end, it proved impossible to choose between two bakes, with a tie being called between Roy Abbott and his scrumptious chocolate raspberry cake and Pam Cox with her marvellous pavlova.
Doctors have discovered that patients with a particular genetic variation are four times more likely to develop pancreatitis if they are prescribed a widely used group of drugs.
Clinicians at the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust and the University of Exeter Medical School have discovered that 17 per cent of patients who have two copies of a particular genetic marker are likely to go on to develop pancreatitis if they are prescribed thiopurine drugs. The drugs, which include azathioprine and mercaptopurine, are some of the most effective and most commonly used drugs to suppress the immune system in the treatment of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), rheumatoid arthritis and after some organ transplants.
The official opening of the Devon Garden took place on Friday 5th September. The event saw Chief Executive Angela Pedder cut the ribbon and declare the therapeutic garden open for dementia patients and their relatives to enjoy.
The event was attended by RD&E staff and patients, the project design team, researchers from the University of Exeter, and representatives from local charities and Devon County Council. After a listening to a speech from Angela Pedder and a rededication of a tree in the garden by Simon Harrison, guests were able to take a look around the garden and explore its innovative features whilst enjoying an afternoon tea.
Nadine Ridge, from Somerset, has raised over £1000 for the Exeter Kidney Unit Trust Fund at the Royal Devon and Exeter hospital thanks to her newly customised scooter. The 1961 Lambretta LI 150, or ‘Mad Nads Kidney Machine’ as she calls it, has been decorated with images and information about kidney health to help raise awareness of chronic kidney disease.
Nadine’s father Michael has been diagnosed with kidney failure and is currently being treated at an outreach clinic of the RD&E in Taunton. Nadine was keen to help raise the profile of kidney problems and to encourage others to look after their kidneys better. “You always hear about cancer and other illnesses, but you don’t always hear about kidney failure” said Nadine. “So I wanted to raise awareness of how to spot the signs of kidney failure and to explain to people that you need to look after yourself. I thought decorating my scooter would make people interested and make them want to do their own research
Optometrist Kieran Loft, from the Royal Devon and Exeter’s West of England Eye Unit (WEEU), is on the lookout for your old spectacles.
In January 2015, Kieran will be going on an aid mission with local charity the Plymouth-Bissary Aid Project to perform eye tests and distribute glasses to people in a remote part of the Gambia.
Kieran is asking for old or unneeded glasses to be donated at the reception desk of West of England Eye Unit, just near the main entrance to the Wonford hospital, before they are shipped out to West Africa in November.
He’ll be utilising his optometry skills to help people in the remote village of Bissary who have difficulty accessing and affording basic healthcare such as an eye test.
36 pupils from schools across Exeter visited the RD&E for their ‘Work Observation Week’ to make a first step towards their future career.
The annual programme gives young people in Year 10 and above the chance to find out how the RD&E works and to consider the many different jobs the NHS has to offer.
A highlight of the programme was the ‘mock ward’ exercise in the RILD Clinical Skills rooms, which gave pupils the opportunity to experience how a real-life ward is run. By acting out the roles of doctors, physios, OT, nurses and housekeepers alongside RD&E staff they were able to learn more about the roles involved in patient care and the challenges that staff face.
Children and young people who are having oncology treatment on Bramble ward at the Royal Devon and Exeter hospital can now enjoy two newly refurbished rooms thanks to Dawlish charity Richard’s Wish.
Richard’s Wish was set up in memory of seventeen year old Richard Cridge, who had oncology treatment for Ewings Sarcoma on Bramble ward before he passed away in 2008.
The refurbished rooms, which have been designed with teenagers and young people in mind, were recently opened by Richard’s parents, Jo and Dave Cridge, along with representatives from the charity and the Exeter Foundation.
Two new Parkinson’s Nurse Specialists have joined the Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital to improve care for patients with Parkinson’s disease. Stacey Andrew and Samantha Moore will help to ensure patients receive the right specialist care when they are in hospital.
Their part-time posts have been funded by the charity Parkinson’s UK for the first two years.
Stacey and Samantha will help to ensure patients with Parkinson’s are identified at the earliest opportunity following admission, and will then provide an outreach service to review inpatients and ensure they are receiving the right care.
The Exeter Leukaemia Fund (ELF) has invested £30,000 to help realise the idea of building a family room for Haematology patients at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital.
The local charity has invested the funds to develop and plan out the reworking of space in the Haematology Centre to accommodate an area where critically ill patients can enjoy time and privacy with their families. The family room will bring all the comforts of home, but also allows quick access to hospital facilities and expert healthcare professionals when required.
Pupils from St Peter’s School, Exeter, have recently collected a range of medical equipment from the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital destined for St Andrew’s Hospital in rural Malawi.
28 pupils will deliver five cages worth of equipment to St Andrew’s during their 20-day annual expedition this July.
Over the last 12 months the Emergency Department at the RD&E has been collecting out-of-date medical supplies that would otherwise be disposed of. The collection includes basic equipment like syringes, needles, gloves and catheters that are vitally needed but always in short supply at St Andrew’s.
Get your walking paws at the ready and come down to the Exeter Quayside on Sunday 14th September to ‘Walk with the Lions’ or ‘Run for Bramble’. The 2.5k sponsored walk and the 5k sponsored run is being organised by local charity the Exeter Lions Club to kick off their latest fundraising campaign – the Bramble Children’s Play Fund.
Join mascot Leroy the Lion, dressed up as your favourite animal, to walk or run along the picturesque banks of the River Exe and raise money for a worthwhile cause. The run starts at 11am and the walk at 12.30pm from Piazza Terracina.
Patients in the Princess Elizabeth Orthopaedic Centre (PEOC) at the RD&E will soon benefit from a new bladder scanner thanks to a £5,000 donation from the ‘Trolley Shop’.
The not-for-profit enterprise is run completely by volunteers and offers patients a range of refreshments, toiletries and stationary during its daily ward rounds. Any proceeds made by the Trolley Shop are put into a fund, and once a year, every ward in the hospital is given the opportunity to apply for support from it. The Trolley Volunteers Committee then decides how the money will be distributed.
Join the RD&E’s #HELLOMYNAMEIS campaign this week
- Watch and share our special #hellomynameis campaign video
“It’s not just about knowing someone's name, but it runs much deeper. It is about making a human connection, beginning a therapeutic relationship and building trust. In my mind it is the first rung on the ladder to providing compassionate care.”
RD&E Outpatient Services Review Survey
The RD&E is appealing to members of the public to give their opinions in an online survey focusing on the review of outpatients services. We want to ensure residents in the local area of the hospital get the opportunity for their voices to be heard. You don’t need to be a current or previous patient at one of our clinics to take part.
No matter what you were treated for, your experience will make a valuable contribution. Your views can help us develop and improve the services we offer now and in the future.
To share your view simply take part in our short online survey, visit RD&E Outpatient Services Review by Friday 18th July.