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Silhillians ignore rain to support their Hospital

The rainy weather didn’t prevent hardy Silhillians from enjoying the annual Friends of Solihull Hospital Summer Fete, which raised almost £3,000 for the Hospital.

Mayor of Solihull, Councillor Ken Hawkins, opened the fete, which featured live entertainment, including Birmingham Pipes and Drums and dog training demonstrations. A tombola, cake and gift stalls and lots of activities for children added to the fun.

Claire Molloy, managing director of Solihull Hospital and community services, said: “It was a great afternoon and everyone who came along thoroughly enjoyed it. We are very grateful to the Friends of Solihull Hospital for all the hard work they put in raising money towards helping us provide top class care to the local community.”

Friends of Solihull Hospital Association fundraiser Liz Steventon, said: “The weather on the day of the fete, 16 June, was bad but the event was still a great success so it is a very big thank you to everyone who came along. It was a fun day out for all the family, and we have raised lots of money towards our current campaign to raise £87,000 for new keyhole surgery equipment. We really appreciate the support of the local people who were prepared to put up with the rain.”

The Friends of Solihull Hospital Association raise an average of £2,500 from the fete each year, and have raised over £900,000 since the group started in 1953.

If you would like to find out more about the Friends of Solihull Hospital Association, make a donation or volunteer, please email Liz Steventon,

Solihull’s community special care dental team is out and about to bring a smile to people across the borough during National Smile Month (21 May – 21 June).

A healthy mouth means a healthy body but around a third of adults and children still have tooth decay in the UK. To tackle this locally, the team has been visiting Solihull Hospital, day centres, schools and Chelmsley Wood Children’s Centre armed with dental advice and freebies.

Dental staff are leaving people plenty to smile about, even those without their own teeth. This year the main focus has been on older people. The day centre visits have also included the offer of free denture cleaning and marking with an owner’s name so that dentures do not get mislaid or muddled up.

Clinical director, Penny Heyworth said: “Poor oral health can lead to tooth ache and decay and has also been linked with serious health problems such as diabetes and heart conditions.  We want to show people that caring for their mouth properly can help prevent problems as well as enabling them to smile with confidence. It is important to brush teeth twice a day and visit a dentist at least once a year.”

For more information about National Smile Month and caring for teeth please

Solihull Special Care Dental Service is a community based part of Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust.

CONSULTANT DR JULIAN HULLIf I agree to be an organ donor – will medics work as hard to save my life? How many lives could I save by becoming a donor? What happens if I need a transplant?

Members of the public are invited to go social and have all their questions about organ donation answered by Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust’s specialist, Dr Julian Hull, next week.

The leading expert will host a tweetathon on social networking site, twitter, in order to tackle some of the topical issues concerning organ donation and to help dispel any myths in the lead up to National Transplant Week in July.

Dr Julian Hull explains: “Twitter is a friendly, informal environment open to all to get any of their questions answered and to debate the subject of organ donationfreely while being anonymous.

“More than 10,000 patients in the UK currently need a transplant to make them well.  Although 90 percent of people say they support organ donation, only 29 percent have joined the organ donation register. I’m looking forward to hearing everyone’s thoughts and opinions about this issue.”

To be a part of Dr Julian Hull’s organ donation tweetathon, visit the Hospital Trust’s Twitter account @heartofengland from 2 July until 8 July.

If you don’t have a Twitter account already go to and follow a few easy steps to set one up.

new sleep research unitLocals can sleep easy as Heartlands Hospital opens the region’s largest sleep unit, aiming to explore why people have sleeping problems.

With up to one in four in the Midlands suffering from some kind of sleep disorder, the new unit for sleep and metabolism research will allow doctors to discover the reasons behind conditions such as sleep apnoea, insomnia, narcolepsy and obesity-related sleep conditions.

Dr Dev Banerjee, Heartlands Hospital consultant in sleep and respiratory medicine, said: “This unit will help improve the health and welfare of patients suffering from sleep disorders, both locally and internationally. We are now able to compete with other world centres in developing world class research in this field.”

Dr Shahrad Taheri, consultant endocrinologist and specialist in weight management, said: “Having a new facility to open up the unknown research questions in the field of obesity, metabolism and sleep is a huge boost. We are indebted to the support given to us by Philips Respironics and Advantage West Midlands to enable us to open this innovative facility.”

President of the World Federation of Sleep Research and Sleep Medicine Societies, Professor Ron Grunstein, who officially opened the new unit, said: “This is a landmark event in sleep research in the UK. Sleep disorders and sleep health is important and you can’t do the relevant research without facilities like this.”

The new unit for sleep and metabolism is part of the Medical Innovation Development and Research Unit, based at Heartlands Hospital. The unit consists of four, fully dedicated sleep and metabolism rooms, with equipment to measure in detail a patient’s sleep and breathing patterns.

For more information about the new research unit, contact the Heartlands Hospital sleep study enquiries line on (0121) 424 0835.

G4S music pledge 1
Dad Oliver Dew and son Charlie enjoy music games.

Poorly children at Heartlands Hospital received a musical boost this week, thanks to a generous donation of £25,000 made by facilities management and support services company, G4S FM.

The Hospital’s music programme will receive £5,000 a year for the next five years to support their efforts to bring music, games and vocal tutors to the paediatrics unit and children’s A&E departments.

Stuart Mold, director (central region) for G4S FM, said: “G4S FM are proud to support this extremely worthwhile project to enrich the care and experience of young patients at Heartlands. We are committed to working in partnership with our customers and the communities in which we operate and we look forward to ‘singing medicine’ delivering real benefits over the next five years of our new contract at the Hospital.”

Esther Jackson, music coordinator at the Hospital, said: “We are delighted to have received this pledge and will be using the money to fund our newest music project ‘singing medicine’ one of Ex Cathedra’s largest education projects. Singing Medicine will provide singing games for children with life-limiting conditions and their families for the development of personal and social skills, coping mechanisms and distraction techniques.”

There’ll be something for everyone at Solihull Hospital’s annual summer fete held on Saturday, 16 June 2012.

Mayor of Solihull, Councillor Ken Hawkins, opens the fete at 1.30pm where there will be pipes and drums and dance troupe performances, dog training demonstrations, a bouncy castle, vintage military vehicles, face painting, afternoon tea and cake stalls along with many more fun activities to see and take part in.

Fete organiser, Liz Steventon from the Friends of Solihull Hospital Association, said: “Our summer fete is one of the major highlights of our fundraising calendar and regularly attracts several hundred visitors each year. All money raised goes towards supporting our Hospital. Plus, it’s a really good day out for all ages, with local entertainment that’s second to none.”

The summer fete is open to the public and free parking is available at Solihull Hospital on the day. Admission is 50p (free for children) and all money raised goes towards buying life saving equipment for Solihull Hospital. The Friends of Solihull Hospital Association raises an average of £2,500 from the fete each year, and has raised over £900,000 since the group started in 1953.

If you would like to find out more about the Friends of Solihull Hospital Association, or to make a donation, please email Liz Steventon,

Falls expert Carolyn Lindsay, will be out and about in Chelmlsey Wood on 19 June to help keep older people steady on their feet.

A Solihull Community Services health visitor specialising in injury prevention, Carolyn will be taking part in a falls awareness event in the town centre from 10am – 3pm along with experts from Age UK Solihull and health trainers from You+, the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust healthy lifestyle shop at Chelmsley Wood Shopping Centre.

Carolyn explains: “Many older people do not drink enough and dehydration is a major cause of serious falls as well as ill health. Healthy eating is also important and we will be giving nutrition advice and offering those with enough pedal power the chance to make their own healthy fruit drinks on a Smoothie Bike.

“We will also be offering blood pressure checks, walking aids assessments and one-to-one advice on strengthening exercises people can do at home. Often, falls are caused by unsuitable rugs or other hazards in the home and we can arrange to carry out a home risk assessment to help prevent these happening. So if you are concerned about falling or are concerned about someone else, please come along for free help and advice.”

Available on the day will be freebies, competitions, interactive displays, information about personal alarms, a spectacles-cleaning service and a collection box for old glasses for recycling.

Youngsters on the children’s unit at Heartlands Hospital celebrated the Diamond Jubilee in style with a special bash including a magician, musicians and buffet.

Current and past patients along with their families were invited along to the unit to enjoy the entertainment and join in the celebrations to mark this special occasion.

Cystic Fibrosis patient, Lee Hill aged 16 from Sheldon has been a patient on the children’s ward since 2005.  Lee said: “I was so pleased I was able to join in the celebrations today.  It was fantastic to see everyone to celebrate the Diamond Jubilation; it really took my mind off being in Hospital.”

Group operations director of women and children at the Hospital, Simon Hallion, said: “It is good to see patients enjoying commemorating the Jubilee together.  The staff on the wards have worked really hard to make this afternoon such a success; events like this helps to make the children and young people’s stay in Hospital a far less daunting experience.”

With one in five women in Birmingham not attending their cervical screening, Good Hope Hospital specialists are urging those eligible to get tested.

Cervical screening, available to all women aged between 25 and 64, is a key method of preventing cervical cancer, as it detects any abnormalities on the cervix which if left untreated could lead to cancer.

Specialist gynaecology nurse, Lisa Murray, said: “The highest incidence of cervical cancer occurring is in women aged between 30 and 39.  Cervical screening is a simple and painless procedure and with early detection and treatment, it is estimated to prevent up to 75 percent of cervical cancers.  We urge women to book an appointment with their GP as soon as they receive their reminder or to contact their GP if they think their screening is due”.

Cervical screening awareness week is taking place between 11 – 19 June. An awareness stand in the Treatment Centre of Good Hope will be offering information and advice throughout the week.

Sihillians will be hoping for good weather as the Friends of Solihull Hospital Association (FOSH) hold its annual fete at Solihull Hospital next Saturday, 11 June.

The Fete will be officially opened by the new Mayor of Solihull, Councillor Irene Chamberlain, and will feature live entertainment, including Birmingham pipes and drums, Stagecoach Dance Troupe, Harmony Band and Thornabbey Dog Training. There will also be a tombola, cake and gift stalls and lots of activities for children.

Friends of Solihull Hospital Association fundraiser Liz Steventon, said: “Our summer fete is a major part of our fundraising calendar and all money raised goes towards supporting our hospital. Plus, it’s a really good day out for all ages, with local entertainment that’s second to none.”

Admission is 50p and all money raised goes towards buying equipment for Solihull Hospital. The Friends of Solihull Hospital Association raise an average of £2,500 from the fete each year, and have raised over £600,000 since the group started in 1953.

The fun starts at 1.30pm and is open to all members of the public. Parking is free and children go free if accompanied by a paying adult.

The Fete is part of the Association’s fundraising calendar and regularly attracts several hundred visitors each year. If you would like to find out more about the Friends of Solihull Hospital Association, or to make a donation, please email Liz Steventon,

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