News £84,000 donation supports NHS workers in Lancashire and Cumbria In April the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Trust received a generous award of £84,000 from the national Coronavirus campaign by NHS Charities Together. Now these funds are being spent on improvements and schemes to benefit frontline staff working tirelessly at these hospitals. So far this year NHS Charities Together has raised over £123 million, with the clear aim of supporting the non-medical care of patients - through providing improved means of communication while visiting is restricted, and by supporting the welfare of NHS staff and volunteers both during and after the pandemic. Alasdair Boyle, Chair of Unions at UHMBT, said, “We are very grateful to have been awarded these funds, which are being spent on equipment and services to support patient communication, as well as improving access to outside space for both staff and patients and improving staff rest and kitchen facilities. “To support patient communication, we have funded iPads to help patients stay in touch with families and friends; webcams to help those colleagues working from home to stay in touch with their teams; a change of service for Bay Trust Hospital radio to move to digital, to improve access for both patients and families; and support for access to healthcare projects with particular reference to translation and sign language support. “We know that due to social distancing many colleagues are spending their rest time outdoors, and we are making improvements to outdoor spaces at each of our three hospitals. We are providing additional outdoor seating, tidying up gardens and courtyards, and providing new pots and plants to brighten up these areas. Gardening itself has been shown to be therapeutic, and we have had lots of interest from hospital workers volunteering to look after these green areas.” The Trust took a staff-led approach to the award, and reached out to colleagues before beginning any projects to ensure that the funds would go to the areas that would make the biggest difference. This approach was very well received amongst hospital staff, and out of 150 ideas received, 92 projects were identified. 28 projects have now been taken forward, with a further 32 currently being explored. The NHS celebrates its 72nd birthday on Sunday 5 July. To mark this huge milestone, UHMBT is showcasing stories from staff across the Trust to celebrate how inclusive and diverse the NHS is as an organisation. If you would like to donate and support your local NHS hospital, contact Bay Hospitals Charity on 01524 516064. Bay Hospitals Charity is a registered charity which raises money to improve patient care and the hospital and community experience across University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust. By donating to Bay Hospitals Charity you can fund the latest equipment and help make your local hospitals more comfortable, ensuring you and your loved ones get the best possible care and treatment.