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Good Hope Fundraisers Help Fight the Battle Against Blindness

Anna Howle, matron, Good Hope fundraiser, Vera Holley, and lead consultant, Tony Bleetman, pose with the new tono-pen instrument at Good Hope’s emergency department.
Anna Howle, matron, Good Hope fundraiser, Vera Holley, and lead consultant, Tony Bleetman, pose with the new tono-pen instrument at Good Hope’s emergency department.

Hard working volunteers at Good Hope Hospital have seen months of fundraising work pay off, with the arrival of a new piece of equipment on the emergency ward.

The £2,500 tono-pen device will be used to rapidly and accurately diagnose patients with early stage glaucoma, a serious eye disease causing blindness if left undetected.

The pen measures the pressures in the eye, with elevated pressures indicating glaucoma, and will be used on any patient that comes in to the emergency department with a head ache.

Tony Bleetman, consultant lead in Good Hope’s A&E said: “Those over the age of 40 are particularly at risk from glaucoma, and the quicker they can be diagnosed the better the outcome is for the patient.

“Before the arrival of the tono-pen, we may have referred a patient we suspected of having glaucoma to the eye hospital or eye clinic. Now we can provide a much quicker, more accurate diagnosis. We are extremely gratefully to Vera Holley and her team of volunteers for all their hard work in raising the funds.”

Heartlands-Hospital-scanner-pic-twoHeartlands Hospital is celebrating the arrival of a new scanner, the first of its kind in the region and only the second to be installed in the NHS. The new CT scanner, known as a Toshiba Aquilion One 320 Slice, has the ability to scan an entire body part in one rotation and in less than a second. This is a fraction of the time compared to previously available CT scanners, resulting in the patient’s investigation being completed more quickly, and radiologists able to access the scan results within seconds for a faster diagnosis.

The CT scanner also offers the lowest radiation dose available to patients, along with providing a very high scan quality. For use in examining all the major body parts and imaging whole organs in real time, it is expected to revolutionise the means of treating patients, especially those with chest pain and stroke. Dr Madava Djearaman, Heartlands consultant cardiothoracic radiologist said: “This cutting edge technology will enable us to offer patients the best quality of care by improving diagnostic accuracy, particularly for patients arriving at the Hospital with symptoms of chest pain. As the scanner works more efficiently than previous scanners, we are also already seeing a steady increase in the amount of patients we are able to see and treat per day.” Dr Lowri Morus, clinical director of radiology said: “At a cost of just over £2m, the scanner represents a substantial financial investment in radiology services and demonstrates the organisation’s commitment to providing a world class service to the patients of the region.” The radiology department at Heartlands has also benefited from a new, dedicated CT suite, housing its two CT scanners back to back, as well as improved patient reception and waiting areas.


Heartlands Hospital’s £5m Energy Centre has received an official opening ceremony.

Located at the Hospital’s main entrance, the Centre is responsible for reducing the Hospital’s energy costs and providing savings of more than £688,000 per year.  This money will be fed back into caring for patients and making improvements to the Hospital.

The Energy Centre’s state of the art system also helps to improve the Hospital’s carbon footprint, in line with its pledge with the Carbon Trust to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 25 per cent in five years. Heartlands Hospital’s CO2 emissions have already been cut by more than 5,600 tonnes this year, which equates to the environmental benefit of 560,000 trees. Emissions of other harmful green house gases, such as sulphur dioxide, have also been reduced.

Lord Whitty, president of the Combined Heat and Power Association, who officially opened the Centre, said: “The Trust and its partner, energy solutions company, EnerG, are to be applauded for innovating and delivering a system that brings multiple advantages to the local community.”

Heartlands Hospital’s chairman, Clive Wilkinson, said: “We are continuing the commitment to energy conservation and the reduction of our carbon footprint. We’re also on target for similar schemes at Solihull Hospital and Good Hope Hospital.”

Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust recently invited in April 2009 the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to review its governance arrangements for the safety of patients. Following a review of all of the evidence and a visit on the 23rd October 2009 the Trust has now received its report. Click here for further information.

Maureen Paul and Dorothy Godwin
Maureen Paul and Dorothy Godwin

Patients at Solihull Hospital are breathing easy thanks to the arrival of new equipment to help those with severe breathing difficulties.

The nebuliser box offers relief by providing medication inhaled through a mask between two and four times a day. The box opens the airways of those patients who suffer from asthma or those who develop breathing problems such as breathlessness.

Maureen Paul, senior sister ward 18 said: “The nebuliser box is a great investment for the ward. Many of our patients experience problems with breathing and we will see a great improvement in their condition with the new boxes.”

Solihull resident Dorothy Godwin, who funded the equipment with a generous donation to the ward following the death of her husband in March, said: “My husband suffered from bronchopneumonia and the staff worked really hard to ensure he had the best possible care. I really wanted to give something back to say thank you and know the nebuliser box, a machine also used by my husband, will help many more patients in future.”


Solihull Hospital bosses have reached an agreement with leading health and beauty retailer Boots UK, this week to bring healthcare services to the Solihull community with the opening of a new outpatient’s clinic on the first floor of the retail store in Mel Square.

Introduction of the new service means the hospital will be the first of its kind to offer blood testing, outpatient dermatology treatment and children’s ophthalmology clinics in a Boots store.

Lisa Dunn, Hospital Director, said: “We are really excited about this opportunity to collaborate with Boots UK. The Trust is continually seeking ways to improve the services provided to our patients and this new development will further expand choice and availability to Solihull patients.”

Paul Bennett, professional standards director and superintendent pharmacist, Boots UK, said: “We are pleased to be extending our portfolio of in-store NHS services, with the opening of this new clinic in our store in Solihull town centre. Our customers have welcomed the variety and accessibility of new services provided in other stores and together with Solihull Hospital, we look forward to offering the same convenient healthcare provision to the local population here.”

All services will be available Monday to Saturday and the clinic is set to open in late November.


Health boffins are invited to a fun and unique educational event in Birmingham this weekend.

The Innovation and Health Day, organized by Heartlands Hospital, will give the public the chance to quiz health specialists on everything from tumours, obesity, sexual health and physiotherapy, to sleep disorders and orthopaedics.  Visitors can also get involved in interactive workshops and attend specific health topic seminars. Information stalls will also be providing health advice and leaflets, with the Hospital’s own medics on hand to give demonstrations and free health checks.

Heartlands Hospital projects manager, Mona Campbell, said: “The aim of the event is to encourage the public to take an interest in the cutting-edge technology and sciences being used to treat patients in the health service. It is also an opportunity for locals to hear about the good work the Hospital is doing in the region. The day has been endorsed by local schools and the Hospital’s membership, who have been key to helping make the day possible.”

Sandra White, membership manager, said: “We have eight specialist consultants at the event who are enthusiastic about educating the public about their work. We have designed the day for those of all tastes and interests to enjoy, even displaying an exhibition called ‘Get Britain Breastfeeding’, a health-related art collection designed by local students, and a theatrical performance from Rosetta Life, an organization of artists who work with those with life-limiting illness.”

Everyone is welcome to attend the Innovation and Health Day from 10am until 4pm on Sunday 18 October at Millennium Point, Curzon Street in Birmingham City Centre. Entry is free. For more information and to book a place, please contact Sandra White or Mona Campbell on

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