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Media Release

Date: 6 March 2018

RUH joins PJ paralysis campaign to help patients keep active and independent

The Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust (RUH) has launched a March on Frailty campaign to help patients "get up, get dressed and get moving."

The Trust's month of activity and events supports the NHS campaign to #endPJparalysis, as research has shown that encouraging and supporting patients to get dressed and get moving can reduce the risk of infection and reduce the loss of mobility, fitness and strength. The campaign to launch the largest ever national drive to end 'pyjama paralysis' will take place at the Chief Nursing Officer for England's Summit on Wednesday, 7 March.

Dr Chris Dyer, Consultant Geriatrician at the RUH explains, "Spending a few days in bed might seem like kindness, but actually it will quickly lead to a lot of muscle wasting. Many patients lose the ability to carry out routine daily functions like bathing, dressing, getting out of bed and walking due to unnecessary bed rest. Just two days of bed rest reduces a patient's muscle strength 2 - 5%, that loss of strength may make the difference between dependence and independence.

Dr Dyer continues, "Getting dressed each day motivates patients to get up and get moving, it's in the interests of our patients to help them be as mobile as possible. If we can help patients get back to their normal routine as quickly as possible, including getting dressed, we can support a quicker recovery, help patients maintain their independence and help get them home sooner."

Even in the freezing weather, March On Frailty kicked off with staff coming to work wearing their pyjamas to highlight the campaign and to get a taste of how uncomfortable or vulnerable you can feel in your pyjamas, when others around you are fully dressed. During the month, wards across the Trust will host regular lunch clubs, exercise groups, live music and music therapy sessions for patients.

Dr Dyer adds "It's fantastic to have this concentrated focus during March, but the support and encouragement we provide to patients to get dressed and move around will carry on throughout the year. We know these small changes will bring great physical and mental benefits and we want them to be part of the everyday practice at the Trust.

ENDS

Notes to Editor:

  • The Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust provides acute treatment and care for a catchment population of around 500,000 people in Bath, and the surrounding towns and villages in North East Somerset and Western Wiltshire. The hospital provides healthcare to the population served by four Clinical Commissioning Groups: Bath & North East Somerset CCG, Wiltshire CCG, Somerset CCG and South Gloucestershire CCG.
  • The Trust provides 565 beds and a comprehensive range of acute services including medicine and surgery, services for women and children, accident and emergency services, and diagnostic and clinical support services.
  • NHS England 70 days to end pyjama paralysis: https://www.england.nhs.uk/2018/03/70-days-to- end-pyjama-paralysis/
  • In 2015 The Royal United Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust was acquired the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases (RNHRD) NHS Foundation Trust. The RNHRD treats patients from across the country offering services in rheumatology, chronic pain and chronic fatigue syndrome/ME.
  • The RUH is changing - we have an exciting programme of redevelopment underway transforming our site and further improving the services we provide. The Trust is now working towards building a purpose built RNHRD and Therapies Centre and a new Dyson Cancer Centre. For more details visit: www.ruh.nhs.uk/fit4future
  • For more information about the Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust visit: www.ruh.nhs.uk

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