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GP Bulletin - August 2017

Our new macula centre has real vision

Our new state-of-the-art macula centre, offering the very latest in imaging technology is playing a leading role in eye health in Bradford. Based on Trinity Road, Bradford, near to St. Luke’s Hospital, the Bradford Macula Centre features the most sophisticated scanning equipment capable of detecting a number of eye conditions.

The new centre means that patients with suspected wet macular degeneration, which causes the loss of central vision, usually in both eyes, will be seen and treated for this condition more quickly, improving the success of the treatment. They can be referred directly to the Bradford Macula Centre by their opticians via a fast-track referral system.

Previously our macular service was based in the pain management clinic in the grounds of St Luke’s. Consultant ophthalmic surgeon Faruque Ghanchi explains: “The new centre will both speed up the patient’s journey through the clinic and increase the number of patients we can treat. Ultimately we hope to be able to see twice as many patients as we see at the moment. We will be able to increase the number of clinics from five per week, run over two and a half days at present, to 10 clinics over five days.”

Prior to moving, our macular service saw a maximum of 125 patients per week but is now able to see 220 per week, and at maximum capacity in the future it should be able to see 300 per week. Consultant ophthalmic surgeon Helen Devonport added: “The project has been a joint working agreement with Bayer Pharmaceuticals, who contributed more than £130,000 to fund a new Optical Coherence Tomography scanner for the unit. Optical Coherence Tomography - or OCT as it is more commonly known - is a scanning system that produces highly detailed images of the retina. It is often likened to an MRI or x-ray of the eye. OCT Scanning is the most sophisticated tool available for assessing eye health and detecting eye conditions including macular degeneration, diabetic eye disease and other eye disorders. This scanner allows us to see detailed images of the retina (the lining of the back of the eye), enabling us to accurately detect, monitor and manage changes to the retina. This latest technology allows us to see flow in blood vessels in the retina without having to inject patients with dye. Previously, abnormal blood vessels could only be detected on photos taken after patients received an intravenous injection of one or two dyes. So we are very grateful to Bayer for their support.”

We’re immensely proud that our ophthalmology department is home to numerous worldwide clinical trials taking the lead in eye care research, and that our new centre is now making such a difference to our patients, who remain at the very heart of all we do.

Patients move into our new Intensive Care Unit

The first patients have moved into our new state-of-the-art intensive care unit (ICU) and are now comfortably settled in and being cared for. A lot of hard work has gone into this project - from the initial planning all the way through to the transfer of patients on 31 July and 1 August.

Read more…

Playing host to international fact-finding visitors

Senior representatives from Toshiba Medical Systems (TMS) have paid us a visit to cement our long-term relationship. Back in 2013, we became the first hospital in the world to use the latest, state-of-the-art CT scanner from Toshiba - allowing us to give quicker and more detailed head and body scans to patients.

The scanner’s introduction also heralded the beginning of a partnership between TMS and ourselves, as Bradford Royal Infirmary was designated their world reference centre. This relationship was cemented earlier this year, when we acquired three Toshiba ultrasound scanners – two Aplio 400 and one Aplio 500 system. The latter is based in the ultrasound department where it carries out general radiology work, and the former in our obstetrics unit.

TMS’s Yuji Hamada (Japan), Henk Zomer (Europe) and Alistair Howseman (UK) were welcomed here by our Medical Director, Dr Bryan Gill, Director of Anaesthesia, Diagnostics and Surgery, John Bolton, and Director of Strategy and Integration, John Holden, who led the visitors on a short tour around the hospital.

Senior Sonographer Karen Lomas then demonstrated the merits of our ultrasound simulators, which allow sonographers to learn techniques, practice their skills and be assessed, before Lead Clinical Skills Educator Tracey Harrison explained the role of the adult patient simulator SimMan in resuscitation training, both in the simulation centre and on the wards.

The tour ended in the radiology department where our guests viewed the Toshiba Aquilion Prime SP 80 CT scanner. In addition to improving workflow, it allows specialist imaging of patients across a wide range of conditions. In his closing speech, Mr Hamada thanked the radiology staff for their support and stressed the importance of our partnership and unveiled a plaque commemorating the visit.

New-look website will be our ‘shop window’ to the world

We’re delighted to share the news that a pioneering project to overhaul our public website is moving forward – thanks to a partnership with the University of Bradford. Our communications team is now working with Simon Couth, Head of the Digital Media Working Academy at the university, to transform and upgrade the Bradford Teaching Hospitals web pages, which can currently be found at: www.bradfordhospitals.nhs.uk.

Our website has been viewed half a million times in the last six months alone, and this is an important opportunity for us to make sure the content on the new site is up-to-date and represents our services in the best possible way. The new website will also be far more mobile friendly, as more people now look at our site on a mobile phone (47%) than a computer (41%) or tablet device (11%).

Simon explains: “The University of Bradford uniquely offers its best performing undergraduates and postgraduates the opportunity to take on real digital production projects through its Working Academy scheme. The Working Academy has already taken on a number of innovative digital projects within the Trust; a virtual clinic for angina and animation and video content for the dietetics team. It is now developing a really exciting project to transform the externally facing website for the trust. The design and development phase is nearly complete with a recent presentation to service managers giving the first glimpse of the highly visual and responsive new site. The graduate team from the university is primed and ready to move into the production phase over the summer and early autumn and will be liaising with all departments about the content that will appear. The university is really proud to be able to collaborate with the Foundation Trust. It aspires to 'Make Knowledge Work' and this sort of project puts the university's vision into practice.”

Collaborative working with Airedale NHS Foundation Trust poised to gather pace

You may already know that we are working with the other hospitals across West Yorkshire and Harrogate, as part of the West Yorkshire Association of Acute Trusts (WYAAT), to reduce the variation patients experience in our services and to make us more efficient. We are doing a particular piece of work with Airedale NHS Foundation Trust to look at some specific services on which we already work together, and how we can make them more sustainable and effective for our local population – and also for the staff working in them.

This work, known as the Acute Provider Collaboration programme, is being led for us by John Holden, our Director of Strategy and Integration. It will gather pace over the summer and autumn with clinical workshops to review pathways, patient outcomes and a number of other factors.