Better screening service at Basildon Hospital thanks to League of Friends

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Patients who need to be checked for small bowel disease at Basildon Hospital are benefiting from the latest screening technology, thanks to a donation from the League of Friends.

Capsule endoscopy is recognised as the best way to investigate the small bowel for conditions such as cancer, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) or anaemia. The patient swallows a minute camera contained in a capsule that passes through the digestive tract, taking about three pictures a second. The images are transmitted to a data recorder held in a belt worn by the patient until the capsule has been passed.

Endoscopy usually involves inserting the camera on a long, thin, flexible tube, either through the mouth – to look at the top part of the small bowel - or the back passage – to investigate the colon, or large intestine.

new provider of domestic abuse service

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The provider for domestic abuse support services for women, children and young people in Thurrock will change this October.

Thurrock Council has announced that the support service will transfer from Thurrock Women’s Aid to Basildon Women’s Aid from 1 October 2015. The existing services will not change, and contact details will remain the same (see below):

Telephone: 01375 845899
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

The services transferring to Basildon Women’s Aid are:

  • 15 bed refuge with associated support for adults, children and young people;
  • Community Support for survivors of domestic abuse;
  • Early Offer of Help ‘STEPS’ programme to raise awareness and build resilience for survivors of domestic abuse (with children);
  • Early Offer of Help universal drop in service offering safety and support planning and practical support around benefits, housing and legal matters.

Immunise for safety’s sake

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People in their 70s are being urged to make sure they receive the free shingles immunisation to prevent the chance of getting the often painful and occasionally fatal condition.

Thurrock Council’s public health team is reminding people in their early or late 70s that they are eligible. Ian Wake, Thurrock’s Director of Public Health said: “I know thinking about having a vaccination is not nice, but it is undoubtedly better than getting shingles.

“Even the small number of people who are unlucky enough to get it despite being immunised tend to get less severe symptoms.”

Anybody who is aged between 70 and 72 or 78 and 79 on Tuesday 01 September is eligible for immunisation until August 31 next year (2016).

Mr Wake added: “Shingles can be painful and uncomfortable and some are left with pain for years - it can even be fatal for 1 in 1,000 cases in people over 70.”

Contact your GP for more information.

Saving lives through organ donation

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National Transplant Week is taking place 7-13 September 2015, to raise awareness of organ donation and to encourage more people to join the organ donor register.

  • Each day in the UK, on average, three people die waiting for an organ transplant.
  • In south west Essex, 30 people are currently on a transplant list
  • Between April 2014 and March 2015, 13 people living in south west Essex received a donated organ, and a further 17 benefitted from donated corneas.
  • There are currently 79,554 people living in the Basildon Hospital catchment area on the UK organ donor register.

(data from NHS Blood and Transplant, August 2015)

New children’s unit has the X-Factor

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X-Factor star Lauren Platt officially opened the first purpose-built paediatric assessment unit of its kind in Essex.

Lauren, 17, cut the ribbon at Basildon University Hospital with her brother Lewis, 15, and spent time speaking with the young patients and parents, who have helped plan and develop the unit.

The Paediatric Assessment Unit (PAU) will be for children and young patients who need hospital treatment but do not require a stay beyond 24 hours. The young patients who will be treated in the unit either need to attend regularly due to long term health conditions or require treatment or observation – for example, following a fall – but do not need to be admitted to a ward.

The unit means that ward beds are freed up for those who need them most and that patients who do not need to be in hospital are able to go home much quicker.

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