Channel 5 News presenter Emma Crosby prepares to broadcast from St Richard's Hospital

5 News NHS Week showcases acute care in West Sussex

Friday December 12, 2014

A woman from Shoreham has expressed joy on national television at having her Type 2 Diabetes reversed by specialist surgery at St Richard’s Hospital, Chichester.

Gill White was speaking during NHS Week on Channel 5 News – a series of special investigations by the national broadcaster taking the pulse of the health service over five days.

On Thursday 4 December, 5 News was broadcast from St Richard’s Centre of Excellence for Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery, where Gill was interviewed both before and after a life-changing gastric by-pass procedure.

Patient Gill White with Channel 5 news presenter Emma Crosby
St Richard’s bariatric patient Gill White with Channel 5 news presenter Emma Crosby

The 55 year-old, who started gaining weight after being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia nearly 20 years ago, said: “It has given me a new lease of life, an opportunity to live longer and have a second shot.”

Gill praised consultant surgeon Mr Chris Pring and marvelled at how she no longer needed diabetic medication after nearly 20 years of dependency on the drugs.

The patient, who works as a dog behaviourist, told presenter Emma Crosby: “I want to take up sport again. I was always very sporty, and now instead of sitting around feeling sorry for myself, I want to be out there and living.”

Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust featured prominently in two of Channel 5’s NHS Week broadcasts, which came live from a different NHS setting each day.

On Friday 5 December, Worthing Hospital was the chosen setting for a programme looking at the future of the NHS.

The hospital’s new Emergency Floor, which opened on December 1, served to illustrate how healthcare is adapting to meet the needs of a changing and ageing population.

The £6.5M project has already received prestigious backing from the Royal College of Physicians as one of only four Future Hospital development sites across the country selected for special attention.

Dr Roger Duckitt, Consultant for Acute Medicine, showed 5 News presenter Matt Barbet around the brand new Emergency Floor, dedicated to the unplanned care of patients referred to hospital by their GP or from the adjacent A&E department.

Dr Duckitt likened the Emergency Floor to a Formula 1 pit stop where a multi-disciplinary team has all the skills in one place to provide excellent emergency care safely and quickly to patients.

This new approach was used by 5 News as an example of how the NHS can adapt if clinicians are enabled to devise and drive their own solutions with the support of management.

Each day’s programmes attracted an audience of up to 800,000 people, presenting acute NHS facilities in West Sussex very positively to a nationwide audience.

Trust Chief Executive, Marianne Griffiths, said: “I am very proud of our involvement with Channel 5 News during its special NHS Week.

“Our staff are wonderful ambassadors for all that the NHS stands for, and it is only due to their professionalism that we are able to invite live television cameras into our hospitals at such a busy time.

“We have a continuous programme of improvement across the Trust and 5 News gave us the opportunity to celebrate some of our achievements on a national stage.”

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