Making sure that our staff are well-trained and up-to-date with the latest medical advances ensures that they can provide patients with first-class care. That’s why we fund extra professional training for medical and non-medical staff and help clinicians attend conferences where they can share best practice with other delegates and expand their specialist knowledge.
The Charity funds hi-tech equipment the NHS could not afford, to make sure that patients are treated by our hospitals using the most up-to-date techniques.
We also provide direct support in many other ways. For example our neo-natal unit fund provides tiny clothing – not generally available in shops – to fit premature babies. And hospital social workers can provide small cash grants to help patients on low incomes buy essential items, like food, when they are discharged.
UCL Hospitals is a member of UCL Partners, one of five UK accredited academic health science systems working to translate cutting-edge research and innovation into new and improved treatment for patients. Channelling our research funds through this body ensures that projects with the greatest potential are given priority.
Our consultants can also use their discretionary funds to support their own local projects. In recent years these have included trials of a brain tumour drug and research into how different individuals react to low oxygen, so that high-risk patients can be identified and managed better when they are under anaesthetic.
Before the NHS was established in 1948, hospitals were private and many of them run by charities. When the NHS came into being, the charitable money that had built up was moved into separate registered charities.
UCLH Charity can trace its earliest roots back to the founding of the Middlesex Hospital in 1745, the first of 19 hospitals that have, over the years, merged to form UCL Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
Our Charity funding provides support for patients and for staff and helps to finance medical research. Everything we do aims to improve the experience for patients at the Trust’s seven hospitals.
We focus on funding items that are over and above what should be expected of a leading NHS hospital, such as:
- buying an important piece of equipment the NHS cannot afford
- improving the hospital environment by providing flowers and art
- funding extra training for staff, particularly in specialist areas
- investing in research so that better therapies can be developed
- providing funds for innovative projects within the hospitals.
Our activities range from tiny, local projects, such as paints and paper for children on our wards, to expensive, cutting-edge equipment and vital research. Some of our current projects are shown here.