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   Welcome to the winter newsletter. I thought this might be an appropriate time to go full circle and bring you up to date on some of the stories we featured earlier in the year, as well as inform you of what is going on at the hospital. I do hope you find it interesting.
With best wishes

John Cherry, Chief Executive

What a funny year this has been!
We have had good news: a stunning report from Care Standards showing we are one of the cleanest and safest hospitals in the country
That was followed by the launch of the appeal to refurbish the hospital. In the autumn one of our cleaning staff, Grace and one of our nurses, Anthony both became proud parents of bouncing baby girls. All the family are doing well as I write this.
We also had bad news: one of the hospitals longest serving medical officers left for a year’s secondment in America, and we are still coming to terms with loosing our Matron, who is now at Charterhouse.
We have had some success stories: record numbers of clergy patients going through the hospital and we are treating more very ill patients from overseas where St Luke’s is the last chance that many of them have.
We have had some failures: we were unable to raise sufficient funds to bring Lya over from Eritrea, and she will shortly be too ill to travel. We are finding it increasingly difficult to perform cutting edge surgery at the hospital due to the costs involved. For example we perform keyhole surgery to remove the gall bladder here, but that costs over £600 in disposable items, almost £30,000 every year is spent on that one operation, before we think about nursing, drugs and other costs. If we had to pay for surgeons or anaesthetist fees this operation would be impossible to perform.
We still have some 200 honorary consultants working at the hospital under the watchful eye of the Chairman of our Medical Advisory Committee, who come and give time and skill at no charge to the hospital. Operations always get the headlines, but in 75% of the patients we see no operations are required. It could be a second opinion or a more conservative form of treatment that is used.
This means that this year our consultants will see over 2,500 clergy patients, with the other hospital helpers, psychiatrists seeing more out in the diocese.
The hospital is now gearing up for the winter rush and the Christmas festivities. This year is very special as it is the centenary of our chapel. The original building was purchased in May 1904 and over the next three years it was redeveloped into the hospital. One of the first things finished was the Chapel; in time for a small service by the trustees on December 14th If any of our ex-patients are in the vicinity at 6.30 pm on December 14th they will be given a very warm welcome and a glass of world famous hot punch produced by our cook.
Our saints day this year falls on a Monday, so we do hope that all the individuals and churches that support us will pull out the stops to raise as much money as possible. Remember that the hospital can only continue to exist with the help of people such as you.
Where would we be without you!