Voices: Pledged to NHS Change Day

Thomas Yip Thousands of NHS staff, including management trainee Thomas Yip, are promising to make a change

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NHS Change Day is hoping to encourage 500,000 people involved with the NHS to pledge to do something different to improve the service.

For example, one of the founders of the day, Dr Damian Roland, will lie on a spinal board for an hour to better understand the experience of patients.

Nurses, therapists, students and others have told the BBC what they are doing to make a change.

Caroline Marsh, preceptorship-development nurse, Nottingham

Caroline Marsh

I work as part of a small team of very dedicated nurses to provide a supportive environment to develop confidence and skills to all newly qualified nurses who start work in our trust, either at the QMC or City campus.

The transition from student to registered nurse can be daunting and we work alongside the preceptors on the wards to support the newly qualified nurses to develop their confidence, refine skills, values and behaviours to continue on their journey of life-long learning.

I have pledged to help people who look lost in corridors. My team pledge is to ensure that all newly qualified nurses starting work at Nottingham University Hospitals know the preceptorship team and how to contact us.

Gillian Rudd, speech and language therapist, Birmingham

Over 20% of people experience communication difficulties at some point in their lives. Communication difficulties can include problems with speech sounds, language, social interaction, voice or fluency.

Gillian Rudd

I have pledged to continue raising awareness of communication difficulties and the support available. I pledged to remember that everyone has the potential and the right to communicate their thoughts, needs and wishes, though not everyone finds this easy. Communication comes in many forms including words, signs, symbols, photos, body language and facial expression.

Fantastic work is done every day by speech and language therapists, service users and charitable organisations such as the Communication Trust, the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT), the British Stammering Association and the Stroke Association to support individuals and their families, but there is more to be done.

This pledge builds on the work already in place following the RCSLT's Giving Voice campaign and the International Communication Project 2014.

Katie Eckert, first-year student nurse, Buxton, Derbyshire

I am a first-year nursing student at the University of Derby, Chesterfield Campus, and also a bank healthcare assistant for the local trust.

Katie Eckert

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I also pledge to smile and use Twitter”

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My pledge for NHS Change Day is to further develop my role as a care-maker, and I will be promoting "the sic Cs" in care, to make people understand them and to develop how trusts focus on them in practice.

The six Cs are:

  • care - providing holistic care for individuals
  • compassion - providing this care with compassion towards the individual and their families
  • competence - we must all be competent in everything we do, this means providing evidence-based care
  • communication - we must communicate with individuals and other teams to provide a holistic care approach
  • commitment - we are all committed to providing the best possible care we can
  • courage- we are courageous in the care we provide, every day we commit to providing care for people we don't know

I will be presenting to my local trust to start with and then to other students. I am hoping to create a notice board at university. I also aim to make more patients aware of the six Cs. I also pledge to continue to smile and use Twitter.

Thomas Yip, graduate management trainee, Stoke Mandeville

Thomas Yip

I pledge to help serve lunch to patients on the wards once a week.

I am currently at Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust. I am working in finance, helping manage the budgets for one of the divisions. As my role is mainly office-based, it can be easy to forget the story behind the numbers. Therefore I want to spend more time with patients and our front-line staff.

Melanie Clements, consultant paediatrician and clinical director, Bury St Edmonds, Suffolk

Melanie Clements

I have a launched a campaign pledge which I hope will have a national impact. This is to improve the outcomes for children and young people with asthma by ensuring all children and young people given an inhaler are shown how to use it and given a self-management plan with information on their treatment, how to use, what to do when they are unwell and how, when and where to get appropriate help.

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This is simple stuff, but we are failing to get the basics right”

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This is simple stuff, but we are still failing to get the basics right in the UK.

This pledge is for everyone including young people and their families. By empowering them to know what to ask for and manage their own illness we can change the culture of care.

This pledge already has the support of Jackie Cornish, the national clinical director for children, young people; the East of England maternity, newborn, children and young people strategic clinical network; and indeed many of the other strategic networks across the country and NHS England, Asthma UK, the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.

Liz Charalambous, nurse, Nottingham

Liz Charalambous

I have been a nurse for 30 years and I love it. I love that I can help people and make them feel better.

My pledge is to "ask people if they need any help, don't wait for them to ask". This goes for anyone, patients, visitors, staff.

It's scary being in a hospital environment and it makes a difference if you see a friendly face.

The NHS has had a lot of bad press but I see wonderful things happening every day and the people I work with are what I call "golden people". They are wonderful and I feel so fortunate to be part of a great team who work under enormous pressure, put others first and go the extra mile every single day.

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