Thursday, March 20, 2008

Back to normality - Major milestone

Well it seems a long time since last week when I spent a day in this tent overlooking a lake on the Yorkshire moors - view on the right. (I think tent is an exaggeration, as it offered little protection.)

Major milestone
I am delighted to say that at a meeting this week with the architects, we have agreed the contractor, who is going to undertake the work on the In Patient Unit. The quotations for all the work have come in line with expectations, this means we will be able to do all the work we have planned. However we will be working to a tight time frame and there will be little or no movement to make any further changes to the plan.

It is hoped that we will begin the work around the 21 - 28 April and it will take 16 weeks. We are being visited by the Health Care Commission on 7 April to assess whether our new Day Hospice department is fit to receive patients and a great deal of work is happening to ensure that we pass. (We will have a contingency plan if we don't pass on that day.)

We have also received the grant from the Department of Health and will be submitting reports to them about what the work we are doing.

I must say the fact that we have got to this point so efficiently, is much to the credit of all the people who have been working so hard in agreeing specifications and deciding on fixtures and fittings. I know many people across the In Patient Unit and Day Hospice have spent hours pouring over plans and details .

One of the key people in all of this has been Colin Bacon who has been been working tirelessly with the architects and all the firms that have been visiting as well as coordinating all the office moves that have been happening. Always ensuring that people have phone and computer access.

I hope will join me in giving him our heartfelt thanks.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Embracing change

As we are experiencing changes in our surroundings we are also coping with the normal changes that happen in organisations when people leave and join the organisation. We will be saying goodbye to some staff, seeing changing roles for others and welcoming new additions to the team.

Change can feel unsettling, but our work with patients and families makes us realise that change is part of life, although we cannot always have control of change we do have control on how we react and respond to it. But I do believe that our work with the dying and bereaved perhaps makes us more sensitive to change, perhaps because we deal with other people's uncertainties we would like less uncertainty in our own lives. Therefore if we all get involved with, and see how we can influence change it should decrease the uncertainty we may fear.

For the Hospice to continue to develop and thrive in the future we must all embrace change positively, over the next months we are going to be developing a plan that will carry us through the next 5 years.

Some of the ideas I have been thinking about are:
  • Making sure that all patients who might need our support really understand what we do and can easily access our services
  • Raise the profile of our work locally and nationally
  • Offer training placements to those who want to see excellent hospice care in action
I know that the whole team is passionate about the work we do and everyone will have a part in contributing to that plan and I look forward to hearing people's ideas.

Ideas are going to be collected:
  • On noticeboards
  • Via email
  • Comments on my Blog
  • Written suggestions to me or via your manager