Published on: 3 January 2020

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Happy New Year!

It’s been an extremely challenging couple of weeks for our staff in so many departments across the Trust. And so I will start by saying phenomenal thanks are owed for the excellent care you have all provided over the festive period.

Two members of staff who spoke so eloquently about what working in the NHS during the holiday period were Children’s Unit Ward Manager Mandy Chillingworth and her colleague Sister Vikki Ketland. Interviewed by a journalist from the Mirror newspaper (which was organised via the Trust Communications Team), Mandy, Vikki and other ‘NHS angels’ talked about giving up their family celebrations to look after sick children at Christmas.

No-one wishes to be in hospital over Christmas and the New Year. It is a time to spend at home with family and friends. Unfortunately, people become sick or injured and need our care and attention. And you do all you can to make sure their stay in hospital is a comfortable and festive as possible. Thank you to Mandy, Vikki and all of you who worked over the Christmas and New Year holidays, thank you for working alongside our partner organisations to make a positive difference to people’s lives during a high pressure time. I know nationally and locally colleagues in the NHS are going above and beyond to help keep patients, service users and carers safely at home and in the community. It is important that we all work together to keep our community happy and healthy.

Other important ELHT services which receive extra recognition at this time of year are our maternity services with the arrival of the New Year babies. It seems the newborns know a thing or two about stealing the limelight because it was a busier day than normal at the birth centres and birth suite with 17 babies born on either New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day. Among the joyous stories was Rishton mum Abigail Hacking who gave birth to her second child at Burnley Birth Centre on New Year's Day, which was also her birthday. 

Clearly January is always a very pressured month but we can rely on our staff to continue to give the best possible patient experience. Continuing pressures remain at the forefront of all our minds but we are presented with a new year and a fresh start to the next decade. I’m sure 2020 will be a year of progression, improvement and partnership. This new phase has already started with the fabulous news that we are to shake the unenviable title of having the oldest MR scanners in the country. Soon we will take delivery of two Canon Orian MR scanners – the first of its type in the UK - and with this development we will become a ‘reference site’ for Canon to showcase their latest technology. And in the coming weeks we’ll be announcing yet more major investment in ‘cutting edge’ technology at both our Blackburn and Burnley sites to help you meet patient demands for our services. Keep checking our social media and internal communication channels to receive ELHT news first.

I will end as I began with a thank you, and to say the New Year is like a blank book. The pen is in your hand, this is your chance to write a best seller!


Deputy Chief Executive