Health minister visits Frenchay Hospital to celebrate the 64th birthday of the NHS

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Health minister Simon Burns MP visited Frenchay Hospital today to mark the 64th anniversary of the National Health Service.

Mr Burns’ visited a ward to meet patients and the medical team at North Bristol NHS Trust’s hip fracture service, which is one of the leading services in the UK for achieving best practice standards.

Over the past few years the hip fracture team – which includes orthopaedic and elderly care consultants, specialist nurses and therapists – has developed a co-ordinated programme which sees most patients being operated on within 36 hours of admission.

Dr Karen Harding, consultant orthogeriatrician, said: "Research has shown that the quicker the surgery, the better the outcome is for these patients.

"Here at Frenchay we try and mobilise most patients the following day after surgery. This is instrumental in helping them recover quicker, and we follow this with an intensive rehabilitation programme to get them back on their feet.

"The results have been incredibly positive. Patients are getting better faster, we have reduced their length of stay in hospital by six days."

Mr Burns also met North Bristol NHS Trust’s Dementia Champions - members of staff from a range of roles, including porters, receptionists and domestic workers, who have received specialist training to become the eyes and ears of dementia patients at Southmead and Frenchay Hospitals to ensure care for these vulnerable patients is a priority.

Long-service members of staff, including a nurse who was born on the day the NHS was established on July 5 1948, also attended the special birthday cake reception with Mr Burns to mark the milestone.

Mr Burns said: "The NHS is valued across the country and recognised throughout the world. My visit to Frenchay Hospital was an excellent opportunity to see first hand the fantastic work of staff and volunteers who go the extra mile to provide care to dementia patients.

"All the staff I met are clearly dedicated to making a difference to the lives of patients and their families. Their hard work and dedication is the fuel that drives the National Health Service 64 years on."

Marie-Noelle Orzel, chief executive of North Bristol NHS Trust, said: "We are very proud that Mr Burns chose to visit North Bristol NHS Trust to mark the 64th anniversary of the NHS to underlinine the value of our work and the dedication of our staff.

"It is wonderful that Mr Burns was able to visit a ward and find out about the great work of the hip fractures team, and meet some of our Dementia Champions as well as meeting long service members of staff."