Quick thinking staff from East Coast Community Healthcare saved patients’ Christmas lunch when they spotted a freezer at Beccles Hospital had broken on Christmas Eve.
They rescued as much food as possible and called for help from Carlton Court inpatient facility in Lowestoft, where Minsmere Ward temporarily relocated earlier this year while the hospital was being upgraded to an intermediate care unit.
Staff from Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Carlton Court, swiftly sent two back-up freezers to Beccles – and patients were able to enjoy turkey and all the trimmings on Christmas Day.
Beccles Hospital Matron Liz Spires said: “That freezer was brand new and full of Christmas meals and food to cover us for the holiday period. Our fast-thinking staff put some of it in our other freezers but they realised they weren’t going to have enough room for everything so they called Carlton Court.
“Talk about collaborative working! Everybody worked together to save the day. I don’t think the patients were even aware of the drama that was going on around them - but that’s how it should be. They may not be able to be home with their families but there was no way we were going to have them missing a proper Christmas lunch.”
Minsmere Ward had 21 inpatients over Christmas. They also had a treat earlier in the day when ward manager Cassie Watts came to the hospital on her day off and served them their breakfast – dressed as an elf!