We provide high quality healthcare services primarily to the residents of East Lancashire and Blackburn with Darwen, which have a combined population in the region of 530,000.
Regular readers of the blog will know about our ongoing integration and collaboration work with our partner organisations - clinical commissioners, mental health Trust and local authorities. As healthcare evolves and becomes more complicated, bigger and bigger teams are required, and increasingly we are working in multi-professional and multi-organisational teams to really get things right for our patients. The closer we work together the more comfortable we are becoming and have found the idea sits very naturally within healthcare.
Only this week at the Trust Board meeting I described our organisation as a "hospital without walls". By this I mean we are removing the walls which patients hit when they try to move from one healthcare service to the next, or the walls which force them to be in hospital when they would much rather be in their own home. The Pennine Lancashire Partnership - Together a Healthier Future programme, is enabling us to do this while empowering each organisation to continue to provide the very best level of service they can in the areas where they add the most value.
You will be seeing and hearing much more about the Pennine Plan over the coming months. And I would urge and encourage you to familiarise yourselves with it so when the time comes you can contribute towards changing our health and care system in Pennine Lancashire for the better.
Culture and leadership is very important to our organisation, it is a cornerstone to developing our workforce. One of the new development work streams is the creation of a Shadow Board. This flagship future leaders initiative will support more diversity of thought and perspective to board matters. It will also provide a place for aspirational leaders to gain the right level of knowledge and understanding to take on a challenging Director/Board level role. Meeting two days before the Trust Board meeting, the Shadow Board will gather to debate and decide the very same issues as the Board, before putting forward their recommendations. Further information and how to apply to become a Shadow Board member can be found on OLI.
This week – Wednesday 13 March - was national no smoking day. You may have seen our Smoke-free team out and about working with our partner, Lancashire Care’s Quit Squad, encouraging smokers to use the day as their day to quit. Sadly there is a real need for this service due to the high prevalence of smoking across East Lancashire, so our partnership with Lancashire Care is incredibly important. More locally, we receive regular complaints from visitors, patients and staff about having to walk through clouds of smoke at the main entrances of our buildings to attend appointments, see loved ones or start work. While we are doing everything within our power to deter such behaviour, including taking disciplinary action against staff in breach of the No Smoking Policy, some smokers are persisting. So, I am asking for your help. Please spread the word that smoking on all of our hospital grounds is no longer socially acceptable; regardless of whether you’re here to work, visit or as a patient. And perhaps to prove the point further, on Thursday the Smoke-free team collected almost four kilos of smoking related litter on the Big Butt Clean Up, on the Blackburn site alone.
And now for something completely different! Our Paediatric Department has recently received a highly acclaimed award – a PAFTA! This is a BAFTA equivalent for paediatric training. Dr Chris Gardner, who is the Clinical Director Paediatrics, was thrilled about the award, and commented that the enthusiasm of our paediatric doctors, often in the face of huge challenges, has had an incredibly positive affect on our trainees, resulting in ELHT being rated the best in the North West! Congratulations and well done to all.
I know that I say it a lot, and I don’t imagine I will ever stop, thank you! You continue to have my utmost respect and gratitude for the million and one things you do every day to make ELHT wonderful. And I know this will carry on as we make Pennine Lancashire a place where everyone thrives.
Until next week...