Category : StaffAid

Chocolate egg ‘mountain’ needs to be given away

  • Chris Easom
  • June 8, 2020

A Scottish charity is trying to give away thousands of chocolate eggs after lockdown forced it to cancel its Easter egg hunts. The National Trust for Scotland had taken delivery of 30,000 eggs by mid-March. With a use-by-date of July, the clock is now ticking for the operation to give them all away. About half of the stockpile has already gone to hospitals, food banks and community groups.

Vale of Belvoir wartime hero Dennis celebrates 100th birthday

  • Chris Easom
  • April 30, 2020

A man who helped save the life of a seriously injured airman after his plane crashed near Melton during the Second World War has celebrated his 100th birthday. Dennis Kirk was serenaded by villagers as they gathered in the garden of his home at Plungar to sing happy birthday accompanied by a lone trumpeter. It was a lovely moment for Dennis and his 93-year-old wife, Joan, and with the need to maintain social distancing on his special day he had a video conferencing call with family members. He retains remarkably vivid memories from his life stretching back to the 1920s and to that harrowing moment when he came to the aid of the surviving airman in that wartime RAF aircraft crash in 1943. Dennis, who has received nearly 100 birthday cards including the traditional one from The Queen, continues to mow his own large garden and puts his longevity down to a healthy life spent mainly doing farmwork in the open air.

NHS ‘no chance of training enough staff’

The NHS in England has no chance of training enough GPs and nurses to solve the shortages it faces, experts say. A report by three leading think tanks predicts that in the next five years nurse shortages will double and GP gaps nearly treble, without radical action. The Nuffield Trust, Health Foundation and King’s Fund says a combination of international recruitment, student grants and innovation is needed. Current figures suggest there’s more than 30,000 extra nurses needed and almost 3,000 GPs. The think tanks say on current trends this will rise to nearly 70,000 nurses and more than 7,000 GPs within five years.

Smoking banned at all Lincolnshire hospitals

All Lincolnshire hospitals have now banned smoking on their grounds to try and reduce the effect of second-hand smoke. Smoking was previously permitted in designated areas at hospitals in Lincoln, Boston, Grantham, and Louth. E-cigarettes and vaping will still be permitted within outdoor areas of the hospitals as long as it is not done in close proximity to others.

NHS A&E departments suffer worst performance on record

  • Chris Easom
  • January 10, 2020

NHS accident and emergency departments in England recorded their lowest-ever performance in December. The latest figures show 79.8% of patients were seen within four hours in all A&E departments last month, compared with 81.4% in November 2019 and 86.5% in December 2018. It comes as pressures on the health service continue to grow. The number of patients visiting A&E departments in December increased 6.5% on the same month last year, with 2,181,024 people attending. There were 560,801 emergency admissions in the month, 2.9% higher than the same month last year.

There were 4.6 million people on the waiting list to start treatment as of the end of November 2019, up from 4.4 million.

Fourth resident at Northampton care home celebrates 100th birthday

  • Chris Easom
  • December 27, 2019

There must be something in the water at St Christopher’s Care Home as their fourth resident turns 100. Former clothes shop owner, Joan Gammage is not even the oldest resident. Nancy Summers, Edna Grant, Eileen Rouse also marked their milestones in 2019. Since Joan was born in 1919, she has experienced the aftermath of World War One, World War Two and has lived under four monarchs. Manager of St Christopher’s, Sarah Clarke, said: “She is a willing and enthusiastic participant in many of the Home’s weekly activities, and her beaming smile will cheer the dullest of days”.

Wheely nice surprise for Stroud care home Scarlet House

  • Chris Easom
  • December 11, 2019

A care home in Stroud enjoyed a surprise visit from a cyclist on a 580-mile charity ride. Care UK’s Scarlet House in Stroud, recently welcomed keen cyclist and charity fundraiser, David Merrett, who was pedalling from Land’s End to John O’Groats in aid of the Multiple Sclerosis Society. He was joined by friend and fellow cyclist, Kevin House, who was raising funds for the Guide Dogs for the Blind. The care home became a very special pit stop for David and Kevin as they took a well-earned break to visit David’s sister, Serena, a resident at Scarlet House, who has lived with multiple sclerosis for many years.

Lack of nurses leads NHS to rely on less qualified staff

Nurses are in such short supply in the UK that the NHS is relying on less qualified staff to plug the gaps, according to a new report. According to the Health Foundation charity, healthcare assistants and nursing assistants have been used to help with tasks that qualified nurses would normally carry out if there were enough of them. Numbers have been shored up for years by overseas recruitment – but Brexit has caused a drop in the number of those coming from the EU, the report says, so the health service is now taking more nurses from countries further afield, including India and the Philippines. The number of nursing vacancies across the NHS is 44,000 – 12% of the nursing workforce.

French elderly care home residents surf in Channel

An elderly care home in Brittany is encouraging residents to remain active in old age, by offering “surf therapy” lessons in the waves of the English Channel. The Ehpad (elderly care home) in Dol-de-Bretagne (Ille-et-Vilaine) now offers the sport to its residents, many of whom have eagerly taken part. “Surf therapy” requires participants to lie forward on their boards, rather than stand – and seeks to encourage confidence, agility, and wellbeing.

Taxi drivers take care home residents on free day trip

Residents and staff at a Bath care home were treated to a free taxi ride to a nearby farm as part of a fun day out. Taxi driver Paul Roles, a prominent figure around Bath, got in touch with Winfield Lodge Residential care home with the idea of giving its residents a day to remember. After Mr Roles acquired the help of fellow cabbies, Mike Bean and Stephen Lasota. Thanks to the taxi drivers, care home residents and staff were driven to Bath City Farm, and enjoyed a couple of hours of seeing the farm animals and a spot of tea and cake too.

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