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  • Green ideas at the The Christie NHS Foundation Trust

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    The Christie NHS Foundation Trust ran a Green Team competition recently with five staff teams presenting their projects to the judges from the Trust's board.


    The Green Team Competition is a quality improvement initiative at the Christie NHS Foundation Trust run with support from The Centre for Sustainable Healthcare, which encourages more sustainable ways of delivering healthcare. Teams were asked for ideas to cut carbon, but also help patient care and save money. Competitors, from endocrinology, palliative/supportive care, outreach, surgical theatre, radiotherapy and anaesthesia did just this – in bucket loads!

    The projects were varied and ranged from streamlining resuscitation equipment and preventing theatres delays/cancellations, to removing, literally, tonnes of carbon through leaky nitrous oxide pipework.  The judges were bowled over with all the results, but awarded the palliative/supportive care team as winners with their photobiomodulation therapy for treating/ preventing oral mucositis. Photobiomodulation therapy is the application of light (usually a low power laser or LED) to promote tissue repair, reduce inflammation or induce analgesia.

    The ‘highly commended’ award went to the Endocrine/Ward 11 team (who looked at introducing screening tools to prevent hip fractures.

    The results of the projects were wonderful, predicting savings of over £550,000 a year. The environmental benefits were really impressive – with carbon reductions equivalent to doing 734 return journeys from Manchester to Kings Cross!

    But the real overall winners are our patients. As an example, In the Palliative/Supportive Care project, Alex Langstaff (the Clinical Nurse Specialist who led the project) was able to show not only massive cost and environmental benefits of photobiomodulation, but the huge impact on patients – which the judging panel were particularly impressed with. She demonstrated significant reduction in hospital admissions and clear improvements to patient’s quality of life. Alex is now working to buy six machines to embed photobiomodulation into future treatment regimens.

    The Green Team Competition has inspired green thinking amongst the competitors, why not think about your own ideas?

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