Blood Counts charity fund launched at The Royal Oldham Hospital

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Blood Counts charity fund launched at The Royal Oldham Hospital
21 March 2017

THE Mayor of Oldham Councillor Derek Heffernan joined staff, patients and volunteers at The Royal Oldham Hospital’s haematology unit today (Tuesday 21 March 2017) to officially launch the hospital’s new Blood Counts charity fund.

Raising money for the unit, which is housed on ward F11 at the hospital, the fund will be used to purchase additional equipment and enhancements to facilities to assist staff at The Royal Oldham Hospital to provide the highest standard of care to patients.  

Although money has been previously raised by patients, relatives and staff on the unit for various pieces of equipment and amenities, the official launch of the Blood Counts charity fund saw the Mayor undertake a tour of the unit and cut a cake which was decorated with the Blood Counts charity logo.

The cake was then shared with patients and relatives on the unit.

Blood Counts cupcakes were also sold in the Café Royal restaurant at The Royal Oldham Hospital for staff and visitors to buy to boost the charity funds.

The haematology unit treats patients with chronic long term blood disorders and blood cancers in the integrated day case and 22 bedded inpatient unit. Most patients attending the department are receiving chemotherapy and can be in hospital for prolonged periods of time combined with numerous day case attendances.

Patient care on the unit is coordinated by an extensive team of consultants, specialist registrars, clinical nurse specialists and many others whose focus is on providing compassionate and quality driven care.

Stephen Rogers from Bury is currently raising money for Blood Counts after his wife Ange received treatment on the unit for multiple myeloma before her death in April 2015.

Stephen explained: “I lost my wife Angela on 18th April 2015 after she had battled with cancer for 18 months, having suffered two tumours.  She spent a lot a lot of time in and out of ward F11 at Oldham, as well as having stem cell replacement at Manchester Royal Infirmary.  I got to see first-hand the lengths the doctors and nurses went to, to help Ange, and indeed watched as she improved her health enough to get back to work to the job she loved. Unfortunately, we were unlucky as the cancer came back.

“I reflect upon that time, and remember that the amount of progress I witnessed on ward F11 really impressed me, and would even go as far as to say, gave us more quality time together with our family, than at some points seemed possible.  I would say that thanks to all your efforts, we were lucky to gain another year of happiness together, that at one time seemed may not happen, and I’m extremely grateful.  After my own brush with cancer, I’m now in a position to attempt to give something back, and I’m hoping that Ferringo Fest will help raise much needed funds for ward F11 and the Blood Counts charity.”

Stephen has arranged a charity music event called the Ferringo Fest on 28 May 2017 from 1pm at Walshaw Sports Club, Bury. The day will consist of entertainment from his band ‘The Steve Ferringo Band’ and other talented musicians.

The Mayor of Oldham Councillor Derek Heffernan said:

"I know this ward and unit very well. The dedicated staff here do a fantastic job. I know how important it is to raise funds for such causes. Money that is raised always goes into the unit to support staff, and most importantly, patients and their relatives.  I would like to thank everyone involved in the Blood Counts fund and I wish you all the very best in your efforts."

Nicola Firth, Director of Nursing at The Royal Oldham Hospital, said:

“The Trust and The Royal Oldham Hospital is dedicated to providing the highest standards of care to all of our patients and support through charitable donations plays an important role in helping us implement a continuous programme of improvement. The Blood Counts fund will specifically benefit the many patients who receive care on our Haematology Unit.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank the generous fundraisers, patients and relatives who have previously made donations, and we look forward to working with many more new supporters whose generosity will help patients in the months and years to come.”

Amanda Lane, Macmillan Lead Haematology CNS, Lead Nurse for Teenage and Young Adults with Cancer, Haematology Unit, added:

“We are very proud on ward F11 of the care we give. Our care is quality driven and compassionate with the patient and their family at the heart of everything that we do. The aim of the charity is to further enhance the care that we give by raising money in order to fund items which can help to make the treatment and care that the patients and their families receive more bearable. Some of these items may be considered luxuries but when you consider that a patient can remain in hospital in isolation for four weeks, suddenly these luxuries can be a vital.

“To date kind donations have been used to provide recliner chairs to enable relatives to stay overnight with very sick patients. A complementary therapist is also employed for one day a week to provide complementary therapies to patients; this is a service we would like to extend.”

If you would like to make a donation to Blood Counts or to register as a fundraiser for Blood Counts please ring the Trust’s charity office on 0161 908 4497, email charity@pat.nhs.uk or visit the Trust’s website at www.pat.nhs.uk