Latest heart valve repairs for patients at the Essex Cardiothoracic Centre

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Doctors and John Orchard
L-R Dr Rajesh Aggarwal; Dr Swamy Gedela, consultant radiologist; John Orchard; Mr Inderpaul Birdi; Sheila Smith, specialist nurse; Dr Rohan Jagathesan

A procedure to repair damaged heart valves, which does not involve major surgery, is now available for patients at the Essex Cardiothoracic Centre (CTC).

People suffering from the most common form of heart valve disease will no longer have to travel to London for the minimally invasive treatment, but can go to the world-class specialist centre at Basildon University Hospital.

Last month, Mr John Orchard, aged 88, was the first patient to have a transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) procedure carried out by specialists at the Essex Cardiothoracic Centre.

Narrowing of the aortic valve, known as stenosis, leads to obstruction of blood flow out of the heart. It is the most common form of heart disease and occurs in two to four per cent of adults over the age of 65 years.

First primary care paramedic arrives in Thurrock

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paramedic story image Sharon and Sue

A forward thinking GP provider in Thurrock brings the expertise of a Paramedic – Emergency Care Practitioner to GP surgeries in the area.

Dr Pro Mallik, Medical Director, College Health, has engaged Sue Finan, ECP, to support unscheduled patient care for patients in and around Grays, Tilbury and Corringham. Dr Mallik hopes to embed this community practitioner service across all College Health surgeries. Sue joins a small team of carefully selected, qualified and experienced specialists as the new first port of call for all unplanned home visit and urgent care requests as well as essential support to the GP’s looking after the care needs of patients in care homes in the area.

In addition to work out in the community, Sue also supports the GPs in surgeries including; Oddfellows Hall Health Centre and the Commonwealth Health Centre (formerly Shehadeh Medical Centres), taking triage calls and assessing patient requirements for support from a medical professional in the surgery or a home visit. She is able to update patient records from her mobile computer so that GPs can quickly see their patient’s treatment plan.

Excellent care of endoscopy patients leads to prestigious accreditation

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endoscopy team

The endoscopy department at Basildon University Hospital has received a prestigious quality accreditation with the compassionate care of patients being praised.

Staff were applauded by inspectors for “the high standard of achievement and for their hard work during the accreditation process”, as the team was awarded Joint Advisory Group for GI Endoscopy (JAG) accreditation for one year.

The unit was commended on its:

  • Excellent clinical, nursing and managerial leadership.
  • High quality clinical governance practices and detailed analysis and audits.
  • High quality, safe endoscopy for all patients.
  • Reconfigured patient flow, optimising privacy and dignity in the department.
  • Compassionate attitude of the staff, who were observed to be very caring, with patients at the focus.
  • Post-procedure helpline staffed by the on-call endoscopy nurse.
  • Robust processes for assessing the competence of new endoscopists.

As part of the accreditation there was an agreement that additional evidence of action to further reduce waiting times would be submitted in October 2017.

Clare Culpin, managing director of Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The endoscopy department worked tirelessly to secure the JAG accreditation and I am thrilled that they received such a glowing report.

“The team’s united effort has produced excellent results and this is reflected in the incredibly positive impact it has had on the staff’s morale.”

For more information: 

New options for south and mid Essex hospitals

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Doctors and health care leaders have announced a new development in the options for future hospital services in mid and south Essex.

In recent months, two main options for change have been discussed with patients, staff and stakeholders. Both options would have seen significant changes to the way the three A&E departments at Broomfield, Basildon and Southend hospitals operate.

Having studied the available evidence and listened carefully to the views of local people, patients and stakeholders, clinicians and health leaders have now decided to develop a revised model that would enable all three current A&E departments to continue to treat people who need emergency hospital care, including continuing to receive ‘blue light’ emergency patients with serious conditions. It would rule out the blanket redirection of all ‘blue light’ ambulances to Basildon, as in previous options.

Under this plan, patients would be assessed, stabilised and treated in their local hospital, with the most unwell patients transferred to a specialist team, if that’s what they need. The ‘norm’ would be for people to go to their local hospital in an emergency. As before, all three A&E departments would continue to be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and run by consultants.

Get active with your favourite Disney characters

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A Disney-supported initiative is offering tips and advice on getting your kids moving this summer.

Shakeup PlayTime small

Being active helps improve children’s physical health and mental wellbeing, yet just 23% of boys and 20% of girls currently meet the daily national recommended level of activity of 60 minutes.

On Monday 17th July, Change4Life is launching a national 10 Minute Shake Ups programme with Disney, Sport England and schools to help get the nation’s children active.

The 10 Minute Shake Ups from Change4Life with Disney are back this summer for families to take part in together. New Shake Ups will be released each week over the summer holidays with games, featuring characters from Disney Pixar’s latest animation Cars 3, as well as Disney’s Moana, Frozen Fever, Zootropolis, Beauty and the Beast and The Lodge. New for this year, the 10 Minute Shake Ups will focus on core skills such as running, jumping, throwing, catching and balance and can be completed throughout the day. The 10 Minute Shake Ups with Disney also aim to inspire longer term activity among children, promoting healthy habits all year round.

Every 10 minute burst of exercise can make a real difference in helping children reach the 60 minutes they need each day. Visit the 10 Minute Shake Ups website to find lots of exciting Disney inspired 10 Minute Shake Up games and make this a non-stop summer of fun and activity. 

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