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Members of our clinical staff

If you are coming to Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals next week (16th – 20th April), you might find yourself being looked after by staff dressed in their pyjamas. This is not the new uniform policy, but hospital staff adopting the national 70day #endPJparalysis campaign, supported by Professor Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer for England.

According to a study in 2009, an average hospital patient in their 70s spends only approximately 43 minutes per day out of bed. Too much bed rest can lead to a state of being deconditioned, where patients lose muscle strength. In fact, a week in bed can lead to a 10% loss in muscle strength in the elderly, and building this strength back can take twice as long. Failure to recover this strength can mean the difference between living independently or requiring ongoing help and care.

The aim of the campaign is to encourage patients to get out of their pyjamas, get dressed and be active to avoid deconditioning. Sue Tranka, Chief Nurse, is fully behind this campaign. On why this is so important, she said, “Being in pyjamas reinforces the idea of being ‘sick’ and unable to be active, which prolongs the recovery process. I’m really pleased that we are part of this important and fun national campaign and look forward to seeing it in action on our wards next week.”

Dr Keefai Yeong, Consultant, adds: “EndPJParalysis is such a simple but important concept. Bed rest can cause a plethora of symptoms such as constipation and depression. The treatment for these conditions is not more pills but just simply getting patients more active”.

Ashford and St Peter’s are asking for help from patients and their relatives to make next week a success – if you have a relative already in hospital or are due to come into hospital then please bring clothes with you to change into during the day.