2017: our year in review

As we draw nearer to the end of the year, we thought we’d look back at some highlights from 2017.


In January we got off to an early start, sharing news of a pioneering genetic test being trialled in our hospital. At three months old, Matthew Knight reacted badly to a vaccination, was admitted to hospital and suffered multiple infections over a course of ten years. In January this year, Matthew finally received a long-awaited diagnosis after submitting blood samples to the Exome Project. The research was part of an ongoing effort to create a diagnostic test for all genes associated with diseases. Read more about Matthew’s story here.

February saw new advances in arthritis treatment with Southampton surgeons using innovative new procedures. The technique involves extending a metal nail within the shin bone with a remote-controlled magnet to treat early-stage arthritis in the knees. Read more here.

In March, a UHSFT team visited the Big Bang Fair in Birmingham and showed off our inflatable MRI scanner. Working with the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM), we demonstrated this incredible piece of kit. This inflatable version of a new Siemens Aera scanner has been used by babies and toddlers as a chance to get familiar with the experience. Read more about our inflatable scanner here.  

Thanks to the generosity of patients, staff and fundraisers, the appeal for a new children’s emergency department hit the £1 million mark in April. Fundraising in partnership, The Murray Parish Trust and Southampton Hospital Charity have been working hard for the last year to raise money for this appeal. Read more about how we reached £1 million here.

In May, some of our staff, patients and parents became television stars in a new ad campaign for Pampers’ premature baby nappies. After receiving accreditation from Bliss charity, the neonatal unit at Princess Anne Hospital was asked to trial the nappies and participate in the company’s TV advert. Read more about our neonatal TV stars here.

We joined forces with the emergency services and air ambulance crews for a region-wide training exercise in June. The major trauma education team created a large-scale road traffic accident using upturned vehicles, sound effects, scenery and some volunteer ‘casualties’. Read more about the event here.

In July, we were all inspired by the fundraising efforts of a patient’s brother. 22-year-old Hugo Cordle ran the London Marathon on behalf of Southampton Children’s Hospital Charity and raised £38,000 for Piam Brown ward. The donation marks the ten year anniversary of Hugo’s brother being diagnosed with the blood cancer acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. Read more here.

Millions of viewers got a rare opportunity to see the incredible work of our neuro intensive care unit in August. ‘Bring Me Back to Life’ aired on Channel 4, following the story of Taylor Britton who suffered life-threatening injuries after being involved in a car accident. Read more here.

In September, we granted behind the scenes access to our hospital as part of our annual hospital open day. Over 6000 visitors enjoyed the day’s theme of Health Hero Academy, learning what it takes to work in one of our amazing clinical teams. They were able to follow the journey of patients through our paediatrics intensive care unit, see simulated patients in our emergency department and have an exclusive tour of the operating theatres! Read more here.

With Halloween around the corner, we were looking at what scares us in October. We had a special visit from Leo the therapy dog to show us how having an X-ray was nothing to be afraid of! See the video here.

In November, we were proud to secure £300,000 to fund three specialist assessment rooms in our ED for patients with mental illness or suffering with substance abuse. This investment follows an increased availability of specialist mental healthcare in the department, led by the liaison psychiatry service. Read more here.

Earlier in December, our youth and play services team launched the 999 Club in partnership with clinicians at South Central Ambulance Service. This concept gives schoolchildren the opportunity to visit the emergency department where they are able to meet staff, tour the facility and see inside an ambulance. Find out more about 999 Club here.


Throughout the year we post news stories from around our Trust.
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Posted on Saturday 23 December 2017