Laundry Operator, David Hood, demonstrates the use of the SLZ Single Laundry Legger Presser as Minister of State in the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Dr. Sonia Browne; General Manager of Co-operators General Insurance, Anton Lovell; Chief Operations Officer, QEH, Dr. Christine Goodridge; Laundry Superintendent, Richard Mapp; and staff from the Laundry Department look on. (GP)

Co-operators General Insurance has made the jobs of staff in the Linen and Laundry Department of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) easier and more efficient by donating $30,000 in equipment.

Minister of State in the Ministry of Health and Wellness with responsibility for the QEH and non-communicable diseases, Dr. Sonia Browne, and the hospital’s new Chief Operating Officer (COO), Dr. Christine Greenidge, were on hand to receive the two pressers –  a FMT Mushroom Topper Press and a SLZ Single Laundry Legger Press yesterday.

Dr. Browne told those in attendance that she “had the pleasure” of visiting the Linen and Laundry Department recently and despite issues with “broken down machinery” the efficiency of staff was commendable.

She also noted that while people usually considered patients, doctors and nurses when it came to the hospital, “they tend to [forget] the people who are behind the whole institution” such as the staff in housekeeping, laundry services, and the kitchen.

“This (linens) is a part of the patient experience.  It’s one thing to leave home; your own surroundings with your own bed and your own linen to come into what we would consider a strange place for treatment. You’re ill; you’re vulnerable and this is one of the initiatives that will go a long way.  There is some lack of linen in some places so this, too, will add to it. But the whole idea of patient comfort, obviously it leads to better recovery; more efficient recovery if a patient can feel comfortable….  

“I would love to see the other private sector entities and corporations also follow suit and donate. There are many areas that we need help in outside of the normal medical equipment and so on.  I support you and congratulate you on this initiative,” the Minister stated.

Dr. Greenidge said the hospital was grateful for the equipment as the Linen and Laundry Department was one of the most critical departments of any hospital, due to the constant demand for linen.

She pointed out that the donation was timely since the department was “going through a resizing in terms of the stocks of linen on our wards” to ensure that supply met demand on a daily basis.  

The COO explained that the donation would help with making patients at the hospital comfortable, in addition to preserving their privacy and dignity.

“I’m not sure if anyone gave full thought to what a sheet means to someone, especially as our patients come through our A&E….  Thank you so much. The thought of donating presses is going to enhance the efficiency of the staff in our laundry and linen department. And in that regard, I want to really applaud the efforts [of the team at Co-operator’s General], in meeting the demands throughout this huge facility and ensuring that our patients are well comfortable,” Dr. Greenidge emphasised.

General Manager of Co-operators General Insurance, Anton Lovell, said the donation was part of a conscious effort by the company to give back, following the celebration of its 30th anniversary in 2020.  

He added that health officials, management and general workers at the QEH had done “tremendous work”, particularly over the past two years with the onset of COVID-19.

“[The] QEH, as we appreciate, functions with serious financial constraints, with expenses always outstripping its income.  We had approached the office of the Executive Chairman and asked that they identify areas where assistance is needed. The Laundry Department was identified and items of equipment were purchased with the financial assistance of Co-operators General. We were indeed happy to help and do hope that the equipment installed here will make the laundry staff’s work easier and allow for increased productivity,” he stated.

melissa.rollock@barbados.gov.bb

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