Our Hospitality Service has now been running for a year and the impact it has had on the care of our patients in the In-patient Unit is immense. Currently Tracey Heritage leads a team of ten volunteers who visit each patient in their room every morning to discuss what they would like to eat for lunch. Orders are taken back to the kitchen, prepared by the catering team and then each hand plated course is delivered to the patient.
Previously patients were asked to order meals for the following day and given their lack of appetite and clinical challenges this was often difficult. Now patients can discuss what they would like and although there is a menu, the catering team do their very best to produce any requests made. Tracey said ‘by having this service patients are having more one to one with the hospitality assistants. We become a friendly face each day.’
The meals patients ask for are often simple requests, one patient told Tracey she didn’t want any lunch so Tracey asked her what she would have had if she was at home. She replied ‘ a slice of ham, slice of chicken, 2 small tomatoes, 1 slice of onion (thinly sliced) & 1 new potato’. The meal was prepared in the kitchen and when it was taken to the patient she burst into tears saying ‘to think someone has done this especially for me, I am so honoured’. Tracey has many, many examples of lovely comments and thank yous from our patients and relatives which show the impact this service has on their care and wellbeing.
Tracey and her team work extremely hard and try to spend as much time with each patient as they can. To help this we are looking to recruit another 10 volunteers to ease the pressure on those currently in the team and to ensure each patient gets as much time and attention as they need. For more information read more
Louise Clive, Facilities Manager