Double Celebration as Millom Hospital marks its 40th birthday

Community groups are coming together with healthcare organisations for a double celebration to mark the 40th birthday of Millom Hospital on 12th March 2015.

As well as celebrating the birthday of Millom Hospital, the partners who make up the Millom Alliance will be celebrating their achievements over last six months by working together, including the arrival of a new GP and a community paramedic.

The 40th birthday celebrations will be kicked off on Sunday 8th March by Millom Health Action Group who are holding a sponsored walk called ‘Walk of the Friends’.

This will be followed by a photograph opportunity of all the partners at 1pm and exhibition of photographs, memorabilia and displays from healthcare partners at the Tin Chapel on St Georges Road on the 12th March.  This will be open to the public between 1-4pm.

Reg Heathcote is the Chair of Millom Hospital League of Friends and has been a member of the league of friends for 30 years, he said, “We are very pleased that all the partners are coming together to mark 40 years and we hope as many people as possible come to help us celebrate.  We are especially keen to have past members of the league of friends, hospital staff and even younger members of the community from schools to look at the history of the hospital.”

In the first six months of working together, the partners that comprise Millom Alliance have:

  • Moved the general practice surgery from its old premises into refurbished clinic space in the hospital.
  • Re-opened the hospital ward, significantly reducing the length of stay for patients  
  • Produced a GP recruitment video with 5000 views in the first week resulting in the recruitment of a general practitioner.
  • Placed the first advanced community paramedic in the North West in Millom, fully integrated with the clinical team.
  • Placed a full time ward based Nurse Practitioner in Millom flexing to community need when required and working with the paramedics to establish the ambulance pathfinder scheme
  • Created capacity to support more patients requiring intravenous treatment in the community, reducing referrals to FGH
  • Upgraded the X-ray facility at the hospital
  • Developed a care home support scheme with temporary support from the CCG then sustained it from within existing resources
  • Identified video consulting equipment to link Millom up to A&E at FGH and also to CHOC
  • Successful joint Millom Alliance/CLIC bid for a £20k grant in to the North West Leadership Academy dragons den pitch to develop an out of hospital leadership programme.
  • Successful £28k bid to Health Education England North West for Telehealth equipment
  • Purchase of St Georges Hall completed to enable demolition and creation of car park for the hospital (to start this month)
  • Have been selected from over 100 applicants to present at the Kings Fund conference in London in March – taking a joint team of GP practice, CPFT, UHMBT, NWAS and the community group.
  • Dedicated a nurse one day a week to work with the action group mobilising the community for health and wellbeing – for example a local school is putting on a  play about how to use the health service properly.

Dr John Howarth, Director of Service Improvement at Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust said,

“You can see that what we have been able to achieve in 6 months simply by working together is quite remarkable.  The success is down to 100% commitment shown by all of the partners and not least Millom Health Action group who worked with us to understand the difficulties we were all faced with and producing and sharing a film that has seen new GPs arriving in the town.” 

The Millom Health Action Group have also:

  • promoted the pharmacy minor illness scheme resulting in massive increase in its use – from amongst the lowest use to the highest use in Cumbria
  • co-opted a shop window in Millom for health promotion and updates for the town.
  • created a new town newspaper ‘Around the Coombe’ full of health promotion messages distributed to 5000 households
  • distributed leaflets on how best to use your health services at Millom carnival.
  • surveyed the town to ask their views and priorities for healthcare

Ian Reed, Chair of Millom Health Action Group, “The 40 year celebration for Millom Hospital represents a fantastic milestone in the Healthcare provision for the Town.  As partners in The Millom Alliance alongside The Cumbria Partnership Foundation Trust. The Morecambe Bay University Hospitals Trust and the GP Practice we hope we can build upon the success of the last 40 years and secure services and facilities that the town deserves to serve us for the next 40 years.”

Alison Redshaw, Practice Manager at Waterloo GP Surgery said, “As a group we have achieved a fantastic amount in six months, relationships have been developed and we are continuing to move forward and transform the way we deliver health care. As a GP practice we are pleased to be involved in this double celebration.”

Dr Geoff Jolliffe, NHS Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group’s Lead GP for Furness said: “Partnership working has been the key to success in Millom and as a CCG we are pleased to celebrate with all our partners the 40th birthday of Millom Hospital.  By working together we have improved health services for the local community and have high quality sustainable services now and in the future.  The partnership working will continue as we build on and improve the positive outcomes that have already been seen.”  

Jackie Daniel, Chief Executive, University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust said:

“Over the last two years we've been working in partnership with Cumbria and Lancashire North Clinical Commissioning Groups and local health and care providers to review how patient services are delivered in the hospital and community. Together we have created a vision and strategic plan for the future - better care together.

“Better care together is our clinically led plan for ensuring health and care services across Morecambe Bay can remain safe, are of a consistently high standard and can be financially sustained not just for the next five years, but well into the future”.

“Through collaborative working it is impressive to see what the Millom Alliance Group has achieved for Millom in just six months. I’d like to congratulate all those involved in everything you have achieved for the town and to wish Millom Hospital and all its staff a very 40th happy birthday.”