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Charity: activities, achievements and performance – 2019- 2020

An extract from the Charity Annual Trustees Report 2019-20:

A variety of projects benefiting Trust’s patients, visitors and staff have been funded by the Charity. Some of the main projects of the year under review include:

1 Patient Welfare and Amenities

A total of £1,467,000 (2018/2019: £1,747,000) has been invested in Patient Welfare and Amenities.

Making grants and sponsoring projects related to enhancing patient wellbeing and care is the most direct way the Charity can fulfil its charitable objectives and the Charitable Fund Committee members have prioritised expenditure in this area. This category of charitable expenditure covers the purchase of medical equipment, the cost of projects which improve patient care and monitoring and improving the hospital facilities and furnishings.

Funds were invested in new medical equipment during the year for the benefit of patients. Some of the equipment provided were:

  • The Vivid S70N: This is a portable cardiovascular ultrasound system with 4D capability for the Cardiology department.  This will enable the pinpointing of any issues and symptoms more precisely to ensure the correct required treatment whilst using enhanced digital imaging.
  • Three point of care analysers and consumables to be used Trust wide:  These will help with the rapid detection of influenza and other infections.
  • Three powered wheelchairs for the National Spinal Injury Centre (NSIC), in order to update existing chairs and to meet best practice requirements.
  • The Alter G Anti-Gravity Treadmill for the spinal gym in the NSIC. The Anti-Gravity Treadmill™ technology empowers patients to move in new ways and without pain, to recover mobility, improve wellness, and enhance physical performance.
  • BTS G-WALK system for the NSIC. This equipment is the ideal solution to treat pathologies related to gait disorders. This is a wireless system consisting of an inertial sensor composed by a triaxial accelerometer, a magnetic sensor, and a triaxial gyroscope which allows a functional gait analysis. The system extrapolates from the data acquired all the spatial-temporal gait parameters required to perform a diagnosis or to define a training strategy. The equipment is an intuitive and easy-to-use solution to obtain accurate, objective and quantitative data.
  • Biometrics E-Link Systems for the NSIC. The Systems package together with the tailored accessories are used to meet a wide range of clinical applications from hand therapy through to stroke and neuro rehabilitation. The system includes all the components to make one complete patient evaluation and exercise station for upper and lower extremity rehabilitation.
  • The Vantage Orian 1.5 Tesla (1.5T) Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) for Wycombe General Hospital. This system is a wide-bore magnetic resonance diagnostic device developed by Canon Medical. The device is designed to produce cross-sectional trans-axial, coronal, sagittal and oblique images of the head or body, as well as produce enhanced imaging without contrast such as magnetic resonance angiograms (MRA). This scanner will enable the Trust to provide state of the art care to its patients. The equipment, installation and the room refurbishment were funded in partnership with ScannAppeal Charity. £450,000 was the contribution from this organisation and £325,000 was paid by our Charity.
  • Clinical Photography Equipment in order to establish a clinical video service. This equipment allows clinicians to photograph a wide range of clinical conditions for treatment planning and teaching purposes.

The Charity also invested in different projects established to enhance the care provided to the patients of Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust and improve performance. Some of the highlights include:

  • Continued funding for the Digital Signage Roll-Out. This equipment helps to refresh the entrance areas of the various hospitals within the Trust and provide the public with information screens.  The equipment helps to create an environment that is warm, welcoming and professional to visitors to the Trust.
  • Continued funding for the use of Activity Based Restorative Therapy in the NSIC – St Francis Ward. This additional therapeutic intervention complements the therapy provision and enhances the quality of treatment received by children and young adults with spinal cord injury admitted to the St Francis Ward for rehabilitation.
  • Funding for a digital platform to support the Friends and family survey (FFT).  The survey is a national requirement, gauging how likely the Trust’s patients would recommend its services to their friends and family.
  • Continued funding for the Real Time Patient Electronic Observations and Escalation System. This solution enables staff to convert paper-based processes into digital processes using touchscreen and mobile devices, for the capturing and viewing of observation data in real time at the patient bedside.  Automation of these processes will minimise the risks to patient safety and also improve the quality of care provided.

2 Staff Welfare and Amenities

A total of £50,000 (2018/2019: £126,000) has been spent on Staff Welfare and Amenities.

The Trustee fully support the view that a healthy and motivated workforce is a more effective workforce and there is a real benefit to patient care. Therefore, the Charity has continued to support “the Health and Wellbeing project” which is achieving benefits to staff morale and health through the provision of mindfulness sessions.

The Charity has supported activities aimed at improving individual and team morale, through trust-wide and departmental staff awards for excellent patient care (CARE Awards).

In addition, the Charity has invested in other initiatives for the benefit of the staff. Some of these investments were:

  • Refurbishment of the Critical Care Staff Room and Doctors Room in the ICU at Stoke Mandeville Hospital to provide a comfortable environment.
  • Purchase of two sleep pods for use by Junior doctors between shifts. These sleep pods allow doctors to take short naps to reduce stress during the working day and grab power naps during their shift.
  • Supporting the A&E staff with the licence for the Oak Communications Intranet System.  This is a cloud-based system that enables them to access patient records and more importantly, share information on a patient’s treatment and the correct clinical pathway.

3 Training and Education

A total of £81,000 (2018/2019: £110,000) has been spent on staff training and development.

The Charity plays a significant role in the

development of staff within the Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust. Support is provided to a variety of activities including conferences, workshops and individual training. Support has both enhanced broad personal development and has improved skills directly related to patient care. Some of these training activities included:

  • MSc in Sports Cardiology with St. George’s University of London.
  • British Paediatrics Society Conference, Birmingham, UK.
  • MSc in Stroke and Cardiology with the University of Hertfordshire, UK.
  • Emerging Clinical Leaders course for 2019 with The King’s Fund, London.
  • World Congress on Endoscopic Ear Surgery in Boston, USA.
  • Rehab Week 2019, Toronto, Canada.
  • EU Teach 2019, Lausanne, Switzerland.
  • 58th ISCOS Annual Conference, Nice, France.
  • ANNP Course with the University of Southampton, UK.

4 Research

A total of £50,000 (2018/2019: £4,000) has been invested in research during 2019/20.

The active research studies were aimed to improve patient’s quality of life. Some of the research studies supported by the Charity during the year under review include:

  • The Ann Masson Research Fellowship to support the development of research initiatives within the National Spinal Injury Centre.
  • Neuro-Map Research Study: The evaluation of neuro-navigated transcranial magnetic stimulation for rapid corticomotor mapping of impaired upper limb muscles in chronic spinal cord injury.
  • Neuro-TESCS Research Study: The active transcutaneous electrical spinal cord stimulation and peripheral stimulation for rehabilitation of upper-limb function after cervical spinal cord injury.
  • Both the Stoke Mandeville-Masson Research Awards and The Ann Masson Research Fellowship to support the development of research initiatives within the National Spinal Injury Centre.
  • Managerial Research Post for a period of two years to work collaboratively within the National Spinal Cord Injuries Unit and the Research & Innovation Department. This position is supported in order to enable the Research & Innovation Department to build an infrastructure to find better ways for increasing the number of trials related to spinal cord injuries and for patients to access new interventions for treatment and rehabilitation.

Research grant holders are required to provide an annual report explaining the course and outcome of their work. This is reviewed by the Trust’s Research & Innovation Department and a summary report is submitted to the Charitable Fund Committee. These performance reports require that the number of publications and the number of presentations to national and international meetings is indicated.

Additional details about these projects are shown in note 19 on pages 48-50.

5 Other activities

A total of £2,000 (2018/2019: £2,000) has been spent on other charitable activities. This category includes small miscellaneous transactions.