South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is joining a massive social media movement launched by a terminally ill doctor to boost compassionate care.
The ‘Hello my name is…’ campaign was spearheaded by Dr Kate Granger, a young hospital consultant from Yorkshire who became frustrated with the number of staff who failed to introduce themselves to her when she was in hospital.
Dr Granger, 33, has terminal cancer and has made it her mission in whatever time she has left to get as many members of NHS staff as possible pledging to introduce themselves to their patients.
Her worldwide campaign on social media platform Twitter is inspiring nurses, doctors, therapists, receptionists, porters, domestics and staff in all roles including those from South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
The trust has joined forces with more than 80 NHS organisations that have pledged to launch their own campaigns collectively today.
South Tees alone has about 9,000 staff looking after more than 900,000 patients each year but the collective launch could see over 400,000 staff involved across the country.
The campaign is simple – reminding staff to go back to basics and introduce themselves to patients properly.
Kate talks about this as “the first rung on the ladder to providing compassionate care” and sees it as the start of making a vital human connection, beginning a therapeutic relationship and building trust between patients and healthcare staff.
Staff from The James Cook University Hospital, Friarage Hospital and community services pledged their support with many adding photographs to the trust’s website, Twitter feed and Facebook page to help spread the word.
Karen Harwood, lead nurse for the patient relations department said: “Sometimes it’s the smallest things that can make the biggest difference and taking the time to introduce ourselves to our patients is something everyone at the trust can do.
“We’re also reminding staff to introduce colleagues who are taking over an individual’s care following a shift change so our patients and their families always know who is looking after them, which in turn will help them to relax and feel safe while in our care.
“And we are encouraging staff to ask each patient how they wish to be addressed and to ensure their name badges are always visible.”
The campaign is being endorsed by an increasing number of well-known figures including David Cameron, Jeremy Hunt, the Countess of Wessex, Bob Geldof and Drew Barrymore.