News

Share your feedback on diagnostic radiographer apprenticeship standard

Skills for Health and the trailblazer group responsible for the development of the apprenticeship standard for diagnostic radiographers has launched a consultation to gather feedback on the draft standard.

You can download the standard, which describes the duties, knowledge, skills and behaviours expected of a diagnostic radiographer apprentice by clicking here.

The consultation is an opportunity for employers to ensure that the qualified apprentice diagnostic radiographer is able to meet the workforce requirements for the future.

It may also be viewed by prospective apprentices choosing careers and so the language used within the standard needs to be easily understood.

The questionnaire will take between 20-25 minutes to complete.

The deadline for responses is 12pm on Thursday 21 June.

Midlands Special Interest Group (MSIG) Plain Image Reporting

We would like to invite you to the return of the MSIG in Plain Image Reporting. This event is free to attend and will take place on:

Thursday 12th July 2018 at 17:30pm

Education Centre, Heartlands Hospital, Birmingham B9 5SS

 Agenda:

17:30 – Buffet sponsored by Philips Medical Systems

18:30 – Introductions and Welcome                                         Kirsty Robertson

18:45 – Rheumatoid Arthritis radiographic appearances Dr M. Cleasby

19:15 – Mesothelioma…an overview                                        Rachael Hinchliffe

19:40 – The Impact of Clinical History                                    Louise Small

20:00 – Discussion and Close

Please confirm your attendance for catering purposes via email to louise.small@heartofengland.nhs.uk

Free parking is available; details will be given once attendance had been confirmed.

Louise takes on exciting new role as our first consultant radiographer

We have appointed our first consultant radiographer in a forward thinking move aimed at benefiting both patients and staff. Louise Small, who has worked at all of the three HGS hospital sites over the years before becoming a university lecturer, returned to the Trust to take on the exciting new role in January.

The role – which is a new one – is aimed at boosting and developing radiography in the Trust. As part of her role she is leading a team of 11 plain film reporting radiographers across all of the three HGS sites. She aims to improve report turnaround times for images such as X-rays and help develop the educational side of staff development in conjunction with the department educational leads across all sites. She also aims to work with other professions to develop shared learning between disciplines, keeping the patient at the centre of everything we do.

Louise qualified in 1991 at Selly Oak Hospital and first joined Heartlands Hospital in 1992 as a radiographer. She worked in various radiography departments before joining Birmingham City University as a lecturer in radiography and then as post graduate programme director. At BCU she
gained her Masters in Education and PG Dip in image reporting.

She joined Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust as a consultant radiographer at New Cross Hospital in 2016. When she saw that we were recruiting our first plain image consultant radiographer she thought it was too good a chance to miss.  She said:

“I wanted the job because it was the first post of its type in Birmingham and it was across a bigger trust – I thought you have to grab these opportunities when they
come up.”

She is looking forward to the challenges of her new role.

“For me, my role is to help improve the service, improve quality, and to help increase the research profile in radiography. I want to work with radiographers and staff in other departments to improve radiography education. I also want to see how we can work safely and efficiently together for the good of the patient. I’d like to make patients’ care more seamless and encourage more team working to ensure patients have the best outcome.”

She also wants to maintain the department’s high level of reporting accuracy by continuing the monthly audit of reporting accuracy.

Louise plans to use her university teaching background and experience to aid staff development and is already introducing lunchtime talks for staff. She will work with all staff ranging from undergraduate student radiographers to doctors studying for their plain image interpretation exams as part of their Fellowship of the Royal College of Radiologists.

She is determined her department should not rest on its laurels and always be striving for more improvements. Having a consultant in position should also boost the reputation of the department and raise the profi le of the Trust. She’s already planning to organise special interest groups for radiographers across the West Midlands region.

Louise and her colleagues are also organising accredited study days which will be advertised nationally with aim of attracting a diverse range of health care professionals with an interest in developing their knowledge of image interpretation. Louise is also completing a piece of research looking at the role of clinical history in the valuation of chest radiographs. Once Louise has finished this she hopes to have it published later this year.

New Birmingham hospital Trust formed by merger

The merger by acquisition of Birmingham’s two largest hospital trusts is to go ahead on 1 April 2018.

Plans to bring together University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust – which runs the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham – and Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust, which manages Heartlands, Good Hope and Solihull hospitals, have been given the green light from the trusts’ respective Boards of Directors, with the decision cleared by both Councils of Governors.

The enlarged organisation will use the University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust name (UHB). All individual hospital and clinic names will remain the same, including the Birmingham Chest Clinic.

The single Trust will have approximately 50,000 Foundation Trust members and employ more than 20,000 members of staff. It will be one of the largest trusts in England treating over 2.2 million patients each year, with more than 2,700 beds across its sites and an estimated annual turnover of £1.6 billion.

The Rt Hon Jacqui Smith, Chair of UHB and interim Chair of HEFT, said:

“The final approval to combine the two trusts is the result of a huge amount of preparation and planning to ensure the new organisation can provide the best possible healthcare to the population we serve.”

Dame Julie Moore, Chief Executive, UHB and interim Chief Executive at HEFT, said:

“The combined expertise of the two trusts will benefit all of our patients and bring added benefits to the local health economy that could not be otherwise achieved.”

The merger by acquisition, proposed in September 2016, had been under consideration by the government’s Competitions and Markets Authority for several months before being cleared in August 2017.

The CMA concluded that, while the merger could give rise to competition concerns across a number of elective specialties, these were outweighed by the substantial improvements to patient care that were expected to arise.

In reaching this view, the CMA placed significant weight on the advice on probable benefits from NHS Improvement, the sector regulator, which strongly supported the merger.

NHS Improvement advised the CMA that HEFT had experienced sustained difficulties in governance, quality of care and finances since 2012, which successive management teams had been unable to address.

It also advised that the appointment of the UHB management to HEFT’s executive team in October 2015 had already given rise to a number of benefits, such as reduced waiting times and improvements in the quality and safety of patient care for all HEFT patients. However, these improvements and a number of other longer-term benefits would disappear without the merger and the continued presence of the UHB management at HEFT.

The CMA found that HEFT would be a relatively weak competitor to UHB without the merger and that both parties were experiencing capacity constraints.

The CMA compared this to the wide-ranging nature of the benefits identified by the hospitals and NHS Improvement, which would benefit most patients at HEFT. It also examined UHB’s track record and the results already delivered at HEFT since October 2015.

NHS Improvement also needed to approve the application following the clearance from the CMA.

It conducted a thorough review of the proposed transaction, assessed the business case and issued an indicative transaction risk rating of Amber, which was expected, and sufficient to enable the Boards to undertake the transaction.

The merged organisation, approved at extraordinary meetings of both trusts’ boards on Monday (Monday March 26) will deliver services to patients in Birmingham, Solihull, Sutton Coldfield and South Staffordshire. It will aim to deliver more equitable patient access to better quality and integrated healthcare across the footprint of the new merged Trust, through Heartlands, Good Hope, Solihull and the Queen Elizabeth hospitals.

Diagnostic radiography apprenticeship trailblazer meeting – your input needed

Approval has been given to start work on creating a national standard for apprenticeships in diagnostic radiography.

This is an employer-led initiative which provides an opportunity to have an influence on the vision of a diagnostic radiographer, trained via the degree apprenticeship route.

Involvement includes employers, the Society of Radiographers, the Health and Care Professions Council, Skills for Health, and education partners.

We are now seeking representatives from stakeholder organisations throughout England to engage robustly and constructively in contributing to the vision of an Apprentice Diagnostic Radiographer.

The Diagnostic Radiography Degree Apprenticeship Trailblazer Meeting will take place on Thursday, 25 January 2018 at Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, Birmingham. Registratrion is 10am for a 10.30 start amnd the meeting is scheduled to finish by 3pm.

We need a good range of representatives to ensure the standard meets everyone’s future radiographer workforce needs.

Please indicate your interest by email with your contact details and suggestions of individuals who you believe can contribute to this work by 12 January.

Stepping forward with plans for a new Ambulatory Care and Diagnostics Centre (ACAD) at Heartlands Hospital

For the past 18 months, clinical and operational teams from across Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust (HEFT) have been working on the designs and planning arrangements for a new, four-storey facility on the Heartlands site which will transform our current service provision for patients.

About the proposed design

The multi-million building will offer world-class facilities and house a wide range of health services, including outpatients, endoscopy and diagnostic services, which will care for hundreds of thousands of patients each year.

Share your views

Our open ACAD engagement meeting on Wednesday 4th October 2017 will provide an opportunity to find out more about the proposed new build – come and view our latest plans for the new facility, hear a presentation and ask any questions you have. The feedback you give is important and will be used to further shape our plans to improve the experiences of patients, visitors and staff.

Everyone is welcome to the open meeting on 4th October will be held between 6pm and 7pm at Heartlands Hospital Education Centre: For directions go to: www.myhospitalmap.org.uk/Birmingham/HeartlandsHospital.aspx.

What happens next?

Our intention is to progress through the planning application stage this autumn, to begin construction in 2018 and to have the facility open by 2020.

For more information, please email ACAD@heartofengland.nhs.uk

IV Service – vascular access support

Due to the current increase in demand across the Trust for Intravenous (IV) line placement, a team of mixed specialities from across the Trust have joined together to support this process.

This team, made up of staff from haematology/oncology, nutrition, anaesthetic, radiology imaging and gastro, will be based in the new Vascular Access Suite in Radiology and will provide the service from Monday – Friday from 9am – 5pm at Heartlands. A provision will be in place at Good Hope which will run twice weekly and plans are being made to provide this at Solihull.

The specialist multi-disciplinary team will be able to ensure all patients are vetted to ensure the correct selection and placement of IV, PICC or mid-lines. It will be primarily for nutrition, IV antibiotics and haematology/oncology IV access .

This service is planned to launch on 14 August. Further details for staff will bin the Weekly Round-up.

General Anaesthetic MRI/CT Service

Neil Crooks, consultant in Anaesthesia and intensive care medicine, and Nikki Brockie, imaging services lead, have recently established an elective service to provide MRI and CT scans under general anaesthesia.

The service is aimed at patients who are unable to tolerate scans awake. To date, patients have come from a range of specialities including neurology, acute medicine, orthopaedics, ENT and infectious diseases, but the service is open to all specialities. There are a variety of reasons why patients cannot tolerate these procedures awake, but common examples include learning difficulties, movement disorders and pain.

Up until now there has been no formal arrangement to facilitate scans for this group of patients. This has led to prolonged waiting times, with scans being done on an ad hoc basis when appropriate expertise was available.

By providing this service we can give patients a date for their scan. This allows proper pre-assessment and planning. It also allows carers time to prepare and plan for those patients with learning difficulties. A team with appropriate expertise (Consultant anaesthetist/ intensivist, ODP and ITU nurse) will look after these patients.

The service currently runs every fourth Thursday and three to four patients can be accommodated per day. With prior arrangement, it may be possible to carry out other procedures e.g. blood tests, ECGs while the patient is asleep.

Due to the limited number of places on each list, requests must only come from consultants. Requests can be made via the following email address: gamriscanrequests@heartofengland.nhs.uk. If you wish to discuss a request directly, please contact: neil.crooks@heartofengland.nhs.uk.

Requests for urgent inpatient scans should continue to be arranged by contacting the ITU registrar on call via bleep 2336.

Developments in radiology are the focus of health talk at Good Hope Hospital

Technological advances in the field of radiology, which are currently benefitting patients at Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust hospitals, are the focus of a health talk at Good Hope Hospital in July.

Radiology is a rapidly evolving area of medicine and patients at Good Hope, Heartlands and Solihull hospitals are now benefitting from state- of-the-art equipment as part of a £3 million project to transform the Trust’s imaging offer for its patients.

Throughout the year, at Heartlands, the Trust has completed a £680,000 refurbishment of the interventional radiology suite, a £270,000 digital x-ray room in its Emergency Department and a £425,000 purpose-built general x-ray department, as well as installing a new CT scanner.

Good Hope Hospital will see the arrival of a new CT scanner in July, which follows the installation of a new ultrasound machine and a complete refurbishment of the x-ray room in its Emergency Imaging Department.

The July health talk held by the Trust will be on the topic of the latest developments in technology in radiology and will be led by the Trust’s superintendent radiographer for CT/MRI, Eunan McGlynn.  He said:

“The talk at Good Hope will be a great opportunity to inform people about the exciting developments in radiology going on at the Trust but also across radiology as a whole, as advances are happening in imaging technology all the time.

“Upgrading to the latest technology has allowed us to provide our patients with the highest level of care. It is also great to be able to provide staff with the latest equipment and training to enhance their skills and development. The modern facilities and state-of-the-art equipment enable us to offer a consistent and continuous 24/7 patient-centred service. The new surroundings will also make a huge difference to not only the service but to all our hospital sites, patients’ and staff’s care and experience.”

The talk will take place in the Education Centre at Good Hope Hospital on Wednesday 26 July, between 5pm and 7pm.

To book your place on the talk please contact Sandra White, membership and engagement manager at the Trust, on 0121 424 1218 or email membership@heartofengland.nhs.uk

The Trust runs 10 health talks a year to help raise awareness of a range of health conditions, as well as providing information about the treatment and support that is available.

Visit www.heartofengland.nhs.uk/membership to find out more about upcoming talks and about becoming a member of the Trust.

Good Hope Hospital to see the arrival of new state-of-the-art CT scanner

Patients and staff at Good Hope are set to benefit from the arrival of a new state-of-the-art CT scanner.

Work will begin to remove the old scanner on 7 July, allowing for the surrounding area to be refurbished ahead of the arrival of the new equipment which is planned to be up and running in September.

The new scanner will not only provide the team with higher quality images, but the equipment will allow for an extended range of exams for patients.

Upgrading the CT scanner is part of a wider £3 million equipment refurbishment project running throughout the Imaging Department.

Good Hope has already seen the arrival of a new ultrasound machine and a complete refurbishment of the x-ray room in its Emergency Imaging Department. Please note that alternative CT provisions will be in place at Good Hope whilst the refurbishment work is undertaken to
ensure minimal disruption to the service.