Eight fantastic healthcare workers got to have their cake and eat it – at a special afternoon tea laid on to thank them for their hard work at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital.

The eight individuals all work for The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH), but were redeployed to RJAH when the trauma service was moved to the specialist orthopaedic hospital at the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

RJAH took over responsibility for the trauma service from SaTH in March. The move helped SaTH – who run the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and Princess Royal Hospital in Telford – free up capacity to manage an influx of covid-19 patients.

The eight members of staff were already working in the trauma service and relocated to Oswestry to ensure a smooth transition and help it continue to run effectively in the months since.

With the service now returning to SaTH as of today (Monday 24 August), the afternoon tea was arranged to thank them for their hard work and to recognise the success of the partnership working between the two organisations.

Debbie Kadum, Interim Managing Director for the Musculoskeletal (MSK) Delivery Unit, said: “I speak on behalf of everyone from RJAH when I say we couldn’t have managed the trauma service without the knowledge and expertise of everyone who was redeployed.

“We provided safe, high quality care, a reduced length of stay and received only positive feedback from our patients.

“I’m so proud of how we’ve all worked together during an especially challenging time and achieved something remarkable.”

Jackie Payne, Trauma Sister, said: “Obviously we were all redeployed in extremely difficult circumstances but everyone has gone above and beyond to support us.”

Dr Sairum Kumar, Orthopaedic Geriatrician, added: “It’s been a difficult challenge to come from SaTH and set up a whole new service, but I speak on behalf of everyone when I say I feel privileged to have been part of this and contributing to the success of the service.”

Callum MacLennan, Trauma Coordinator, said: “I want to praise everyone for this special joint effort in the hardest of times to come together for our patients. No one was prepared for this, but the commitment and the desire from the staff to make this work has been second to none.”

The staff who were redeployed were Dr Sairum Kumar and Dr Mohamed El Barberry, Orthopaedic Geriatricians; Jackie Payne, Trauma Sister; Jane Thompson, Fracture Liaison Nurse; Jason Straub and Diane Bailey, Plaster Technicians; Callum MacLennan, Trauma Coordinator; and Suzanne Sharp, Hand Occupational Therapist.

Dr Shu Ho, Consultant Physician, normally splits his working days between the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and RJAH however has spent more time at RJAH during the pandemic, supporting the trauma service.

Pictured: SaTH staff members who have been working at RJAH during the coronavirus pandemic with Debbie Kadum, Interim Managing Director for the MSK Unit, and Ian MacLennan, Assistant Chief Nurse for the MSK Unit.