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NMC at Leighton Hospital Staff Learning

The event was opened by Tracy Bullock, Chief Executive of The Mid Cheshire Hospitals Foundation Trust.
Gill Storey, NMC Head of Physiotherapy and Matthew Lanham (NMC's Chief executive) were invited on 25th June to speak to a group of 70 staff (mainly nurses from respiratory, assessment, A&E and fracture wards) about the particular needs of those with muscular dystrophy when admitted to Leighton Hospital (or indeed any other).

We were able to explain some background about the range of muscular dystrophy/neuromuscular conditions. The sorts of issues and challenges faced by people who have these conditions and some do's and don'ts along with a range of practical tips and advice.

We specifically drew on some patient experiences over the last couple of years. One previous patient at Leighton was 19 year old Ryan who, although unable to actually attend to tell his story on the day, had made a short film in which he talks candidly about how he'd been left alone and uncared for despite clearly asking staff for assistance. He explained powerfully how scared and how worthless that made him feel. The audience hearing Ryan's story were shocked and embarrassed that such experiences had occurred in their Hospital. The Director of Nursing, Julie Smith, recounted how Ryan's film had also been shown to the Hospital Board and it had left them determined to drive through a range of changes and improvements to ensure it would never be repeated. This event was part of that response.

We spoke at length about the needs of Carers. Examples were shared of "how not to do it". We highlighted the wealth of knowledge and expertise that MUST be tapped into by ward staff on admission. We spoke of the need to respect Carers and provide them with facilities and access so they can support the patient and ward team in the best way. Carers may need to sleep over on the ward and may also need careful support at the time of discharge.

Gill Storey spoke about the new NMC Patient Passport which had been jointly created with Sue Pickup (Patient Experience Manager at Mid Cheshire Hospitals) and which succinctly provides the key points relating to individuals with muscular dystrophy in Leighton's potential catchment area.

The work around the new NMC Patient Passport was extremely well received.
Overall a very productive day. Links strengthened and new ones forged and a day which led to greater awareness of muscular dystrophy among frontline hospital staff.