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This Month's News

Paediatrics and allergies

Stoma care service

Pathology requests

Paediatric Rapid Access Clinic update

A change in visiting times at St Peter’s Hospital

Welcome to ...

Surrey Golf Marathon appeal

Spotlight Seminar: Care of the Elderly

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July 2010

Paediatrics and allergies

Research update on use of adrenaline devices

Consultant Diab Haddad attended the EAACI (European Academy of Allergy & Clinical Immunology) conference, which this year was held in London. With a phenomenal number of delegates, around 8000, the conference drew healthcare professionals interested in the field of allergy from the far corners of the world. That interest in allergy is increasing was also demonstrated by the mix of delegates which included, in addition to the traditional immunologists & pulmonologists, general practitioners, gastroenterologists, dermatologists, ENT surgeons and psychologists.

Dr Haddad was struck by the growing complexity of reported allergies, the new diagnostic tests and way they are interpreted and the growing number of interventions becoming available.

This also reflects local experience, as the number of cases of confirmed allergies is on the increase, whilst cases of complex and multiple allergies are becoming the norm. Clinics both in primary and secondary care see many patients suffering from the full spectrum of allergies and allergic diseases. Here, at Ashford and St Peter’s, we are taking steps to utilise the new diagnostic techniques available, including component resolved diagnostics and to offer, where appropriate, sublingual immunotherapy and anti – IgE preparations to our patients.

Some of you may be aware that our paediatric department at St Peter’s took part in a multi-site study to look at the prescribing of Epipens in allergy clinics in a number of UK centres. The results of the study were presented at the EAACI abstract and poster sessions, and a copy of the poster is included in the GP News pack and can be found on the trust’s GP website

In summary, the study showed that 48% of the 969 participants had further allergic reactions; of these more than 50% had anaphylactic (cardio-respiratory) features and of the children who had such anaphylactic type reactions only 16.7% used their Epipens. Of those using their Epipens, 28% had to use another dose. We felt able to conclude that the current UK practice of prescribing 2 adrenaline devices to be accessible at all times can be justified and we thought that these results emphasise the need for more intense education of the families regarding the management of future anaphylactic reactions.

How are referrals made for Paediatric allergies at ASPH?

Via letter in the first instance or Choose and Book, selecting General Childhood and Adolescent, then Allergies.

Stoma care service

The Stoma Care Specialist Nurses based at St Peter’s Hospital provide a comprehensive skilled nursing service to local patients undergoing colorectal or urological surgery which may result in the formation of a stoma, whether temporary or permanent.

Patients having planned surgery are counselled and sited pre-operatively either at home or in outpatient clinics. Inpatient care is provided whilst in hospital and home visits are carried out after discharge. Ongoing follow up is provided either at home or in nurse-led clinics. Stoma care comprises teaching practical stoma management skills, including assistance in choosing and organising the supply of appropriate appliances; assessment and treatment of problems such as sore skin, leakage and parastomal hernia; psychosocial and lifestyle issues such as dietary advice, returning to work and relationships etc. Clinical Psychology is available where required and troubleshooting and recommendations for treatment of problems often prevents admission to hospital.

There is no charge for the service, and no time limit on how long care is available for.

Referral Information

Referrals to the service can be made by healthcare colleagues including GPs, patients, and relatives /carers.

Specialist Nurses

Carol Katté (CK), Sarah James-Reid (SJR), Sally Tyte (ST), Helen Pearce (HP) and secretary, Hilary Lakin.

Areas covered (Clinics + St Peter’s Hospital)

CK - Ottershaw, Chobham, Woking, West Byfleet, Byfleet, Bisley.

SJR - Ashford, Staines, Feltham, Shepperton, Stanwell, Bedfont, Hanworth.

ST/HP - Chertsey, Addlestone, Weybridge, New Haw, Walton-on-Thames, Egham, Englefield Green, Virginia Water.


Tel: 01932 722636/ 723709 (direct lines / answer phones), Fax: 01932 723232, Pager: by name via hospital switchboard 01932 872000.

Please contact us if you would like to discuss any stoma care issues.

Details of new arrangements since April 2010 can be found on the GP Extranet. or via the following weblink.

Pathology requests

Change in Boric Acid containers for Microbiology samples

In order to improve processing of urine samples for culture & sensitivity, we are introducing a new tube type for urine samples. The existing red topped universal container (which contains the preservative boric acid) will be replaced with a kit containing a green topped tube containing a stabiliser. This will enable the laboratory to analyse and report on samples more quickly, providing an improved service to clinicians and patients.

Please see attached Service Bulletin for further information.

GC NAAT’s service now available in Microbiology

We are now able to offer GC NAAT’s on the same sample that you take for Chlamydia NAAT’s.  Please indicate on the request form if you would like this test to be included on your Chlamydia sample.

Filling sample tubes

This is a polite reminder about the importance of filling sample tubes with the correct amount of blood. Under-filling sample tubes for coagulation will result in incorrect results and therefore under-filled sample tubes have to be rejected.

Paediatric Rapid Access Clinic update

We are very pleased that our new Paediatric Rapid Access Clinic (RAC) service has been up and running since March this year.

So far we have seen about 65 children in this clinic and feedback from GPs and families has been very positive. At present the RAC is operational once a week, but from September we will look to increase this to twice a week depending on demand. Due to the poor mobile phone reception in some areas of the hospital we know that it is sometimes difficult to get through to the paediatric registrar. If this is the case please call 01932 723991 and ask for bleep no 5247 (on call registrar) who will be happy to take the relevant details.

Key Contacts

If you have any issues please speak to Dr Tariq Bhatti on 01932 722538, Dr Paul Crawshaw on 01932 723494 or General Manager Helen Sibley 01932 722329.

Referral Criteria

Children who need early assessment and can’t wait for a routine outpatient appointment.

A change in visiting times at St Peter’s Hospital

Visiting times have changed since 1st June 2010 as part of a pilot to help provide a more restful environment for patients while they are in hospital.

We are piloting new ‘evening only’ visiting during the week (6.00 - 8.00 pm), with more relaxed visiting on Saturdays and Sundays (2.30 – 8.00 pm). This will give patients more recovery time and will also help clinical staff give the best possible care. The new times will also help with congestion on the hospital site during the week, particularly with parking, which is of great concern to patients and visitors alike.

Trust Chief Nurse Caroline Becher said: “We know from what our patients and staff are telling us, that we need to create a better environment for rest and recovery for our patients. After much consideration and debate, we have decided to trial new visiting times in most of our wards at St Peter’s Hospital, allowing evening only visiting during the week with longer and more relaxed time for visitors at weekends. Creating more protected rest time will also support our staff in being able to give the right care at the right time, without interrupting patients during valuable visiting time.

We have also introduced a better way for visitors to meet medical staff when they wish to discuss their loved one’s care and condition, which can be done on an appointment basis.”

Visitors may still visit in the afternoons by arrangement (with the Matron / Nurse-in-Charge or Ward Manager), particularly in the following circumstances:
  • Visiting critically ill patients
  • Visitors who feel uncomfortable driving at night
  • Those living far away
  • Those who are reliant on public transport
  • Disabled visitors who are reliant on others
  • Parents who need childcare cover
  • Those who work when the new visiting times would apply.
The new times will not apply to Maternity, Paediatrics, Intensive Care, NICU and the Trust’s Medical Assessment Unit.

We are carrying out a detailed consultation with patients, visitors and staff on the new times. Once the trial period is over (31st August 2010), a decision will be made on the best way forward depending on the outcome of the consultation. If you have any feedback from your patients regarding this please get in touch using the address below.

Welcome to...

Nicola James,
Acute Learning Disability Liaison Nurse

A new learning disability liaison service was launched at Ashford and St Peters Hospital on the 14th June 2010.

The link nurse for Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals is Nicola James, who is a registered Nurse specialising in the learning disability field.

What the service provides:
  • Advice on alternative communication methods for patients with a learning disability.

  • Support to plan hospital stays / visits to make the experience less anxiety provoking for the individual. This could include the use of photographs to aid a persons understanding of what to expect from their stay / visit, arranging longer appointment times or appointments at a particular time of the day which may be quieter. We can also provide support with practical issues such as parking etc.

  • Monitoring of the persons care pathway whilst in hospital and a liaison services between the hospital, carers and GP’s.

  • Involvement in discharge planning.

Contact details

To make a referral please contact Nicola on 07717850308 or email

Surrey Golf Marathon appeal

Get ‘a round’ to help your local Urology department

This year, the Urology Department at Ashford and St Peter’s in association with ‘The Urology Foundation’ launches Golf Marathon. The aim is to raise money to support the advancement of urological care at Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals.

Please see at the attached leaflet for further information

If anyone can help with contacts at their local golf club, or is able to put up posters and sponsorship forms, please contact Justin Collins via email:

Evening Spotlight Seminar - Care of the Elderly

Your invitation to attend

When: Thursday 26th August

Time: 6-9pm. We will be serving a barbecue at 6.15pm on the clubhouse terrace followed by the talks at 7pm.

Where: The Clubhouse, Foxhills Country Club, Ottershaw, KT16 OEL
  • Geriatric service overview– including dementia, rehab and stroke
    by Dr Raad Nari - Consultant in Elderly Care

  • Orthogeriatric and Falls Liaison Service
    by Dr.Keefai Yeong - Consultant Orthogeriatrician

  • Parkinsons disease, TIA and Rapid Access services
    by Dr Zahid Dhakam - Consultant in Elderly Care

  • Prevention of elderly admission - (nursing home project)
    by Dr Radcliffe Lisk - Consultant Orthogeriatrician

Please come along and find out what developments are taking place within this directorate, we need your support to make this evening a real success. Practice staff are very much welcome.

Kindly Sponsored by Servier Laboratories Ltd.

Your Contacts:

ASPH queries in general -

Joanna Matthews,
GP Liaison Manager.
Tel: 01932 723716

ASPH queries related to CAB only -

Michael Hooker,
CAB Manager
Tel: 01932 723511

For queries related to Ashford & St. Peter’s appointments please call 01932 723831 or 01784 884351