Funds from the NHS Charities Together Urgent Appeal have been used by Milton Keynes Hospital Charity to purchase phones, to give patients much needed face-to-face contact with their loved ones who are unable to visit due to social distancing measures.

Senior Sister Naomi shared one patient’s experience of using a new phone. She said: “As soon as her daughter appeared in front of her, her face lit up. She was reenergised, re-motivated and she knew her goal was to get back to her daughter. Her engagement with physios was improved, and each day she was so excited to speak to her daughter in the afternoon.”

Naomi said the phones have been hugely impactful, not only for patients and their families but also for staff. Staff in normal circumstances would ideally like to involve a patient’s family in consultations, however this has been impossible due to social distancing rules. The new phones have enabled them to conduct face-to-face updates with families, which staff say is incredibly beneficial in a patient’s journey towards recovery.

Staff wellbeing

Milton Keynes Hospital Charity is dedicated to improving the physical and mental wellbeing of staff. The charity hs spent £5,000 from its initial grant from the NHS Charities Together Covid-19 Urgent Appeal to fund staff packs filled with essential food and toiletries to ensure their staff were looked after as they worked longer or additional shifts.  

A further £9,000 from the Appeal has been used to create a brand new Staff Hub and furnish it to give staff a place to rest and relax during a long shift. The charity has also installed tea and coffee making facilities and plans to create two more Staff Hubs across different areas of the hospital with the grant from NHS Charities Together, to ensure even more staff members have a place to decompress.

COVID-19 Urgent Appeal

Paul Strong, Trust Fundraiser at Milton Keynes Hospital Charity, said: “The money we have received in grants from NHS Charities Together has allowed us to implement ‘quick win’ projects which have had an immediate and positive impact for patients, their families and the hospital teams. If we had to rely on the usual fundraising processes for grants then it is highly likely that much of what we have been able to do would have taken a lot longer or even not have happened at all.”

Urgent Appeal Grants

Grants given to NHS charities are used to meet the immediate and urgent needs of patients, staff and volunteers. Funding is also going towards helping partnerships outside hospitals, such as hospices, community healthcare and social care, making sure patients leaving hospital have access to the care they need to recover. In the longer term it will also fund programmes to help staff and volunteers recover fully once the crisis has abated, reducing the long-term impact on them and the people they care about.

About the Urgent Appeal

The NHS Charities Together Urgent Appeal acknowledges and supports NHS staff and volunteers caring for COVID-19 patients. It has been put together in liaison with NHS England and national bodies, our member NHS charities and national giving platforms. Click here to donate.