Cromer Hospital has been given an enormous boost by the Norfolk and Norwich Hospitals Charity, which has made its single biggest donation in its history with a £1.8m grant for its new cancer centre.
At the moment, most people from the Cromer area have to travel to Norwich for treatment and the new centre will enable more people to access cancer treatment and support closer to home.
It will include:
six chemotherapy treatment chairs with capacity to treat up to 36 patients a day;
three new clinic rooms and two new minor procedure rooms, creating an additional 10,000 outpatient appointments annually and space for new cancer diagnostics, including prostate biopsy;
and a Macmillan cancer information and support centre.
The new unit will also free up space in the main Cromer Hospital building to deliver an extra 600 surgical procedures in dermatology, urology, vascular surgery and pain management.
Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s head of charity, and trust secretary, John Paul Garside said: “Last year’s spending programme was the largest for a decade. These grants help to improve patient and staff experience.
“Some of the grants given to the trust have been done so using money raised through NHS Charities Together (of which we are a member) which includes finds from Colonel Sir Tom Moore’s £39m.
“I would like to thank everyone who has raised funds for the charity to enable us to make these significant contributions. We value hugely the support we receive from our community, near and far.”
But after this generous donation, the charity has ambitious plans to continue developing its capacity to benefit patients in the next year through research, education, purchase of equipment, staff support and providing “extras” that are not otherwise available through the NHS.
As well as the major donations towards services and equipment, the charity has been providing little comforts that make a big difference during the covid-19 pandemic.
These include spending £17,000 on hand cream for staff, to counter the effects of repeated handwashing and use of antiseptic gel; sourcing iPads to help patients in isolation talk to loved ones; providing 21 fridges, 24 microwaves and 26 kettles for additional staff rest areas in the hospital (thanks to the generosity of Hughes Electricals and John Lewis); delivering 11,000 Easter eggs; distributing 1,000 bouquets of flowers to staff; and providing shower gel and shampoo in all the temporary showers erected on the NNUH site, (sourced through Cringleford Waitrose, Tesco, the Rotary Club of Norwich, Morrisons, Lush, Lucy Bee, Body Shop and Avon).
It also arranged for farm shops to sell produce on site three times a week at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital for staff who were finding it difficult to access supermarkets.