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December 16th 2016

Gavin Boyle
It’s been another busy week, and I’ve spent much of it out and about with colleagues from the Trust and our partners from other organisations. 

The week started with the induction for the new doctors in training. This marks the beginning of their time in the Trust and it’s a fantastic opportunity to welcome the new additions to our medical team. It’s nice to have the chance to thank them for choosing Derby, and share with them a bit about our CARE values and what we’re trying to do here. 

I spent a lot of time this week with colleagues from this Trust and from Burton as we’ve been thinking through some of the details of taking our partnership forwards. At the end of the day the really important thing to focus on is how we can deliver joined-up services for patients across all the communities we serve, and that involves looking and the skills and talent we have across both our Trusts. 

As keen-eyed readers will remember, last week I celebrated my 25th anniversary in the NHS, with a surprise award at our long service ceremony. During that time, there has always been a clear competitive spirit between Trusts; it seems to be the way of the world. But I’ve always felt that the best things come from embracing partnership and working together. The work we’re doing with Burton really resonates with what I have learned over the last 25 years. It shows that partnership is the key to making things move forward. 

Speaking of support within the wider community, it was a great pleasure this morning to welcome the High Sheriff of Derbyshire Liz Fothergill and her husband Richard for a tour around the hospital. Liz has been a great supporter of the Trust during her term in the position - she attended the presentation of our Queen’s Award for Voluntary Services, and the Derby Hospitals Choir concert at Derby Cathedral – so it was fantastic to have the chance to show her around and share some of the great things we do here. 

It was a diverse visit. Accompanied by our Chief Nurse Cathy we headed first to Ward 405, where we spoke to Sister Sarah about the work they have been doing to improve care for patients with dementia. They have a new key worker there, who plans activities for patients to help stimulate these patients while they’re with us. Sue Abdulla, Lead Nurse for Dementia, was also there to tell us more about the services we provide. She took us on to see John’s Room, which has recently opened as part of our efforts to embed John’s Campaign in the Trust. The campaign aims to make it easier for carers to remain with their loved ones 24/7 while they are in hospital, and the room means they have somewhere they can stay overnight. I spoke to Sue about this over a coffee a while ago, so it was great to see how the plans had come to fruition. It was then onto ED, where we met consultants Dan Boden and Susie Hewitt and General Manager Jenny Deakin. It was a chance to learn more about what they’re doing to make us one of the best emergency departments in the area, and how they are implementing new quality standards to ensure we only provide the best care for the rising number of emergency patients who come through our doors. We also took a peek at our Children’s Emergency Department, where Dr Julie Mott spoke about the work taking place there to provide great care for our young patients. Andy March, General Manager for Paediatrics, met us next, as he showed us around Children’s Outpatients, and Puffin and Sunflower wards. It was an interesting trip around, and really showcased the fantastic work which takes place at the Royal Derby. 

Our Chairman John Rivers and I welcomed a number of Derbyshire MPs this afternoon for one of our regular meetings. I always value the support we get from our MPs, and this is a good opportunity to make sure they are kept up to speed with all the things which are happening here. 

And in a seamless segway, one of the great things we have happening here is our annual flu drive. Thousands of staff have now been jabbed to gain protection from winter flu, but we need a final big push before the end of the year to make sure we protect ourselves, our families and our patients. There are still sessions running over the next few weeks, so make sure you take advantage of this free vaccination. Why not think of it as a Christmas present from the Trust? 

Talking of Christmas presents, it was great news this morning to hear that our new staff car park has been given planning permission. Not only will this mean we have more spaces for staff, and therefore more spaces available on the Royal Derby site, but we have also been given permission for traffic lights to go out on the roundabout. Lots of people tell me they love our hospital, but the parking really frustrates them. This will make a huge difference to everyone who uses our services.  

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas as we go into next week. Cathy and I will be judging the Best Dressed Ward and Department competition on Tuesday and Wednesday, and I can’t wait to see the great efforts our staff have gone to. We had a bit of a preview on the tour this morning, and if those areas are anything to go by, we’re in for a tough job as judges. Stay tuned for next week and I’ll reveal all about the winners. 

Have a greet weekend

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