June Drew- Clifton, HeartBeats Chair with Trust Chairman Graham Sims
New charitable funding could give Reading’s residents access to the best Cardiology treatments and diagnostics in the country. The Trust’s Cardiology department is already an award winning heart attack centre. The British Heart Foundation recently praised its newly opening heart failure lounge as an excellent model for treating heart failure in the community.
On Wednesday, 29 June, local charity, HeartBeats, presented a cheque to the Trust’s Chairman Graham Sims at the Board’s monthly meeting. Mr Sims thanked June Drew- Clifton, chair, and Peter Drew-Clifton, secretary, of HeartBeats on behalf of the Trust.
HeartBeats is a charity founded by a group of cardiac patients back in 1995, and is celebrating its 21st year this year. Fundraising through their three branches in Reading, Newbury and Wokingham, Woodley and Early, the charity has provided the Royal Berkshire Hospital’s Cardiology department with £297K worth of equipment, support and services over the years, ranging from cardiac scanning equipment to support staff.
HeartBeats’ latest donation of £48K has enabled the development of a Cardiology Research service and Trust was introduced to Mark Brunton, the new Cardiology Research charge nurse. Mark has worked for the Trust for 18 years but his new role will allow the unit to set up Cardiac research which will greatly benefit patients.
Rob Williams, Directorate Manager for Acute Medicine, and Dr Sacha Bull, Consultant Cardiologist joined in thanking the charity. Dr Bull explained: “Taking part in clinical research gives our patients access to the latest medical treatments including stents, state of the art pacemakers and imaging diagnostics.
“We want to build greater links with academic centres of excellence and industry and, in particular, closer links with the University of Reading. This may drive up funding into the department because taking part in commercial and academic trials brings in revenue to reinvest in the department to continue to offer patients a first class cardiac service.
“Developing our research and development will ensure we continue to attract the highest quality staff and offer patients excellent quality care.”
Mark starts work in his new role on 4 July and will report back to the Trust Board on how the programme is progressing later in the year.