A fresh approach to catering services at Princess Alexandra Hospital
Health / Mon 31st Oct 2022 at 08:14am
HARLOW residents are invited to attend an independent review of the food provided at The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust (PAHT) to carefully design meals that are offered to patients, visitors and staff.
A panel of advisors, including the Patient Panel, who support the hospital to improve services, the quality improvement team, and nutrition and hydration specialists at PAHT, are set to lead the review.
Ann Nutt, chair of the Patient Panel at PAHT, said: “We are keen to hear the opinions and experiences of our patients, their carers, and visitors, about the catering selection we currently offer at PAHT.
“By taking part in the review, you will need to attend two initial workshops, either online or in person, that will provide you with an overview of the project and an understanding of how nutrition and hydration can help to aid their recovery.
“You will then support us with formulating and designing specialised menus that have a varied choice of nutritious, well balanced and appetising food options, suitable for all diets and needs.”
“Once the choices have been agreed, we will move to the production stage to experiment with options that will be taken forward and trialled at the hospital. These sessions will be based in Harlow.”
Michael Meredith, director of strategy and estates at PAHT, added: “The wellbeing of patients and people is a top priority for us, which includes the nutritional care that they receive.
“The valuable input from local people will help to generate a wealth of new ideas and offer the best possible catering service to meet the needs of all our patients, visitors and staff. Thank you to all involved with this project.”
To join or find out more about the catering review panel, contact the quality improvement team at PAHT, at [email protected].
The team will support transport to the workshops and associate costs. Light refreshments will also be provided at each session.
I do hope this is not the start of a process to privatise the catering functions at PAH? I hope the hospital's Board remembers their embarrassing climbdown over trying to privatise the Domestic staff following Unison receiving an enormous strike mandate in a ballot.
It's about time more plant based options were included on the PAH menus. Last time I was a patient there the only option was jacket potato or some foofing awful curry!! Plant based meals aid recovery & healing (proven fact) & can only help to free up hospital beds if patients are healing faster. We all know that eating meat isnt the best diet & by removing meat from your diet 3-4 days a week drastically reduces your chance of developing bowel cancer so surely it would only be common sense to replace most of the meat meals with plant based meals? Some UK hospitals have changed their menus to entirely plant based options and the results have been truly promising. I would be delighted to be a part of the panel so will definitely be applying.
Perhaps the quality would improve if NHS Chefs' pay were improved. Currently, they are in Band 3 of Agenda for Change pay scales. Outside of London this means £21,730 starting salary rising in 2 increments to £23,177. This is despite job adverts demanding City and Guilds 706/1, 706/2 or NVQ 3.