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Chief executive leaving St Clare Hospice

9.09am - 27th April 2017

TANYA Curry is leaving her position as chief executive of St Clare Hospice. 
Ms Curry, who joined St Clare in 2008 as Director of Patient Care, has been at the head of the organisation since 2011. 
She leaves to form her own consultancy business specialising in the charity and healthcare sector. 
She said: “It is with mixed emotions that I stand down at the end of April. It has not been an easy decision to make after eight years at St Clare - an organisation that I love. But it is with happiness and pride that I look back on all that the team has achieved and the huge strides the organisation has taken over the past decade. 
“When I came to St Clare in 2008 we cared for around 400 people a year at our centre in Hastingwood. We now care for more than 1,800 people every year, both in the hospice and across the west Essex community. 
"One of my proudest achievements has been the establishment of our Community services, including Hospice at Home, which has enabled us to care for so many more people in the comfort of their own homes.” 
She added: “The hardest part about saying goodbye to St Clare will be leaving behind the opportunity to meet inspiring and incredibly brave people every single day. Our patients, their families, our staff and volunteers. 
"Every day has brought the opportunity to be part of the St Clare family. I am humbled to have been given that privilege.” 
St Clare Hospice chairman Patrick Foster said: “On behalf of the Board I would like to thank Tanya for all she has achieved in her time as Chief Executive. 
"Tanya has brought St Clare into an era characterised by professionalism and efficiency. The result of this, and Tanya’s dedication, has been to continually grow St Clare’s services, enabling us to help four times as many people as we did in 2008." 
Ms Curry's replacement is Sarah Thompson who joins St Clare from St Joseph’s Hospice in east London where she is currently Director of Fundraising and Engagement.

Hospital highlights special staff

4.48pm - 24th April 2017

PATIENTS, clinicians and other staff members whose innovations improve patients’ care are celebrated in a new 'Amazing People' campaign at Princess Alexandra Hospital.
The campaign focuses on putting people at the heart of what the hospital does, whether they are a patient, employee, volunteer or visitor. It features award-winning staff who demonstrated core values in caring and innovation, and the maternity department, which the Care Quality Commission rated Outstanding in 2016. 
Sue Martin and Pam Taylor earned awards for their impact on patients and services.
Sue, a Dementia volunteer, was motivated by David, her late partner of 24 years, who had dementia. 
She was his full-time carer and visits dementia patients at the hospital. 
She said: "I can’t fault the care people receive in the wards. I feel happy hearing from families and ward staff that I’ve had a good impact on a dementia patient. 
"I knew nothing about dementia. I ordered books, searched the web, checked UK, US and Australian sites. It’s something you have to absorb to understand. 
"I think this hospital is brilliant. I look forward to coming in every week." 
Sue was nominated by Dementia Support Practitioner David Page. 
He said: "Every week Sue gives up her time to sit with patients who are living with dementia. She talks to patients, reads with them, plays games or simply holds their hands and comforts them. 
"People with dementia are often very lonely and scared in a busy hospital ward. Luckily, we have Sue, and nothing is too much trouble for her. 
"Every patient is important to her, and the positive impact she has on patients cannot be over-emphasised." 
Acute Pain Clinical Nurse Specialist Pam Taylor was invited by the British Pain Society to join its Acute Pain Special Interest Group. 
Pam, who has worked at the hospital for 15 years, said: "I thoroughly enjoy coming to work. I would certainly recommend coming to this hospital. I think the staff here really are amazing." 
She was also awarded for 'Living the Values - Caring’ in the last staff awards. 
Her nominator, Matron-in-Surgery Maxine Priest said: "Her caring personality and nature embody how a nurse should be. 
"I am proud to say that I am inundated, on a weekly basis, with patient feedback compliments for Pam. They all state what a kind and caring nurse she is who goes the extra mile to look after them." 
The hospital's HR director, Liz Booth, said: "Through this campaign we recognise those amazing people who provide our high quality service and go above and beyond to ensure that our patients receive the best possible care. 
"It is a pleasure to see the faces and stories of our award-winning staff in posters and displays across the hospital."

Hospice run raises over £8,000

8.31am - 18th April 2017

MORE than 300 runners took part in the St Clare Hospice 10k race which is expected to have raised over £8,000. 
The participants, including four wheelchair athletes, followed the course which started and finished at the Hastingwood hospice.
GB Paralympian Richard Chiassaro won the wheelchair race in 23mins 25secs. 
Richard, who competed in the Rio 2016 Paralympics and coaches the Harlow Wheelchair Racing Squad, finished with three other members of his Harlow-based squad - Joe Brazier (35mins 30secs), Adam Goldspink-Burgess (35mins 36secs) and Martin Pistorius (44mins 31secs). 
The winner of the men's race was Thomas Grimes (Orion Harriers) in 33 mins 54secs. 
He was followed by Afewerk Rosson (35mins 19secs), of Herts Phoenix AC, and Paul Scanlan (35mins 42secs) of Woodford Green AC. 
Lindsay Russell-Smith (Ware Joggers) won the womens race in 43mins 6secs with Alison Trauttmansdorff (Orion Harriers) second (43mins 24secs) and Carinne Jay (Harlow Running Club) third (43mins 47secs). 
St Clare Hospice's fundraising development manager Jamie Hooper said: "It was a brilliant day and, as ever, it was so humbling to witness the support shown by the hundreds of people who took part and volunteered.
"A huge congratulations to our wonderful runners and a massive thank you to them for contributing to an amazing amount raised for the hospice. 
"It is events like this that help to make St Clare the wonderful place that it is - and mean we can continue to care for local people and their families.” 
The full results are on the hospice's website www.stclarehospice.org.uk/news

Drug dealer jailed

3.31pm - 11th April 2017

A WOMAN who admitted dealing Class A drugs has been jailed for more than two years following an investigation by Essex Police’s West Operation Raptor team.
Bana Habtegiorgis, 27, of Longfield, Harlow, admitted possessing Class A drugs with intent to supply when she appeared at Chelmsford Crown Court. 
The court heard how officers searched the Longfield flat on May 25 last year. Several people, including Habtegiorgis, were found inside the home. 
They were all handcuffed and searched and when Habtegiorgis was moved from the sofa where she was sat, officers found a parcel which contained 44 wraps of crack cocaine and 28 wraps of heroin.
Habtegiorgis was arrested and declined to make any comment during her subsequent police interview.
She was charged and admitted supplying Class A drugs and was given a 30-month jail term. 
Sgt James Paget, of the West Operation Raptor team, said: "Those people who are involved in supplying drugs in our community should know that it is only a matter of time before we are knocking on their door.
"Habtegiorgis was found in a property with a significant amount of Class A drugs, we stopped those drugs from reaching the streets and put Habtegiorgis behind bars where she now has two years to think about her behaviour. 
"We will continue to target those people involved in drug-related crime and we would urge the community to support us by giving any information in relation to this crime.” 
Anyone with information about drug or gang-related crime in their community can ring Essex Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. 
Essex Police set up Operation Raptor teams in the north, south and west of the county to target gang and drug-related crime.

Boys assaulted at knifepoint

3.29pm - 11th April 2017

TWO boys suffered minor injuries when they were assaulted at knifepoint and robbed of their mobile phones by three men. 
The 17-year-old boys were in Long Banks when the incident happened at 11pm on Friday (April 7).
The men are described as black, aged between 19 and 25 and wearing dark clothing. 
Witnesses or anyone with information should ring DC Rachel Anderson at Harlow CID on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Man charged with child rape and slavery offences after car wash raid

5.53pm - 10th April 2017

A HARLOW man has been charged with rape of a child aged under 13 and four offences under the Modern Slavery Act 2015 after police executed a warrant at an Epping car wash. 
Officers executed the warrant at a car wash in Bower Hill on Friday following information passed to them and the Community Safety Partnership by local residents. 
Following the warrant four Romanian children have been safeguarded.
Catalin-Florin Buica, 24, of Pennymead, Harlow, appeared before Chelmsford magistrates today. He was remanded until a future date.

Hospice holding 'Go Bright' week

8.15am - 8th April 2017

ST Clare Hospice is calling on schools, businesses and community groups to take part in its first ‘Go Bright for St Clare’ campaign. 
The week-long campaign runs from Monday, May 22, until Sunday, May 28 with an array of ‘bright’ events being held for the hospice. 
Community fundraising lead Dani De’ath said: “‘Go Bright’ is all about supporting St Clare Hospice. 
"Our lovely, bright St Clare logo is all the colours of the rainbow and we want to celebrate the brightness and happiness that St Clare brings to the lives of our community by holding a week of bright, rainbow-coloured celebrations.” 
For more information and to download a free resource pack, visit www.stclarehospice.org.uk/event/go-bright-st-clare/, ring Dani on 01279 773738 or email dani@stclarehospice.org.uk

Council to axe top jobs to save money

3.03pm - 7th April 2017

TWO of Harlow Council's top senior managers are to leave the authority by agreement to save the council money. 
Chief executive Malcolm Morley will leave at or before the end of October with chief operating officer Graham Branchett leaving at or before July 31.
At last night’s council meeting councillors agreed a proposal which will see both posts deleted and replaced by a new single managing director post. 
Up to 2021 the council needs to continue saving money to meet Government funding reductions. Reducing the top management team to one post will save over £424,000 over the next four years. 
To seek to ensure continuity, pending the recruitment of a managing director, Mr Morley will remain in post until October or earlier by agreement. 
Harlow Council leader Jon Clempner said: “My priority is that we always consider options to save money and to ensure that frontline services are protected for residents. 
"Whilst a huge amount has been achieved to reduce costs and to protect services we now have to look further at our senior management team costs again. 
"Reducing the council’s most senior management structure to one post will not impact on frontline services but will help to protect services and other jobs in future by contributing significantly to meeting the overall level of savings the council will need to make. 
"Malcolm and Graham have made a big contribution to the council and to Harlow over their combined 31 years of service and I wish them well for the future.”

Football coach jailed for nine years

2.34pm - 7th April 2017

A FOOTBALL coach has been jailed for nine years for grooming and sexual activity with teenage boys.
Robert Ellis, 50, met one of the 15-year-old victims online in April 2015. 
He invited him to football matches, claimed to have talent spotted goalkeepers and offered to coach the teenager, who was from Lincolnshire. 
Ellis, a civil servant, of Church End, Harlow, arranged to meet him in a park in July 2015 where they played football and later went for a meal. 
The boy’s mother reported Ellis to local police after finding out and banned her son from contacting him again. However they resumed contact in December 2015 and arranged to meet. This was reported to police and Ellis was arrested in January last year, before the meeting could take place. 
During the course of their enquiries, officers spoke to another young man who said he had been in a sexual relationship with Ellis when he was 15 after they met online. 
The victim told how they had twice engaged in sexual activity, once after Ellis had taken him to Chessington World of Adventures and the second time after he had taken him out for dinner. 
During the police investigation it was also found Ellis had been banned by the Football Association from taking part in any FA-football related activity involving under 18s, since December 2013. 
However, he continued to take part in informal football sessions in Harlow that were not covered by this ban. 
Whilst on bail, Ellis met a 14-year-old boy and engaged in sexual touching with him. He was further arrested and remanded. Ellis denied one charge of meeting a boy aged under 16 following grooming, six counts of engaging in sexual activity with a boy aged under 15 and three counts of sexual touching. 
He stood trial at Chelmsford Crown Court where he was found guilty of all charges on February 28. 
He was sentenced today to nine years and made subject of a sexual harm prevention order and will be added to the sex offenders register for life. 
Speaking after the hearing, investigating officer Detective Sergeant Clayton Ford, of Essex Police’s Online Investigation Team, said: "This is a worrying grooming case where Ellis used his love of football and the suggestion of gifts or trips to various places to try and get a teenage victim into a situation where he could carry out sexual acts with him. 
"Thankfully the victim’s family were able to recognise the risk from the messages exchanged and report the situation to police. 
"Where Ellis was able to get unsupervised access to the other teenagers in this case, he went on to commit serious sexual offences. 
"This case highlights the dangers of manipulative individuals operating on the internet looking to identify and exploit vulnerability or a common interest that will give them the opportunity to meet children for their own sexual gratification. 
"I am grateful to the victims, whose courage and assistance has been essential in Ellis’s prosecution and possibly preventing further victims coming to harm. 
"I would urge all children, and their parents or guardians, to have a look at the www.thinkuknow.co.uk website and to be vigilant about the motives of people they do not know who approach them online.”

VOTE 2017: Deadline to register to vote

7.50am - 3rd April 2017

VOTERS have until April 13 to make sure they are registered to vote in May’s county council elections.
Essex County Council is reminding residents to check they are eligible to vote on May 4 as part of the Electoral Commission’s nationwide On Your Doorstep campaign. 
Residents are warned they could lose their right to vote if they miss the registration deadline. 
To apply to register to vote, visit www.gov.uk/register-to-vote before Thursday, April 13.

Health trusts merge

3.35pm - 1st April 2017

THE merger of South Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (SEPT) and North Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation NHS Trust (NEP) has been approved. 
The trusts have been replaced by the new Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (EPUT). This is the first merger between two NHS Foundation Trusts under the current rules. 
A statement describes the merger as "a significant achievement by both Trusts to help secure the future provision of local mental health and community health services". 
When making the decision to merge, the trusts took into account the green risk rating awarded to the proposals by their external regulator, NHS Improvement. 
This is the best risk rating possible and follows a review by NHSI of the plans and the process over the past few months. 
Sally Morris, SEPT's chief executive and chief executive of EPUT’s interim board, said: “The result has only been made possible through the tremendous amount of hard work by very many of our staff, patients, carers and the support of our NHS and local authority partners and we are extremely grateful to everyone involved. 
"The merger is an excellent outcome for local people who rely on our services. We have said from the start that we would be stronger together. 
"Now we can harness the real enthusiasm we have to take the best from both organisations to deliver sustainable and transformative mental health, learning disabilities and community health services for the benefit of people in Essex and Bedfordshire." 
There will be no immediate changes to services with the trust promising “business as usual” for service users and carers "for the foreseeable future".
Any changes to current services are likely to be subject to formal consultation.

Maternity training get funding boost

3.30pm - 1st April 2017

NEONATAL advanced life support at Princess Alexandra Hospital is one of the vital maternity areas set to benefit through new training funding of £50,333. 
The money comes from Health Education England’s Maternity Safety Training Fund programme. 
Areas that will benefit from the funding are Resilience Training and Childbirth Emergencies in the Community while a Labour Ward Leaders course will be provided for more than 100 staff. 
Courses will be run by organisations such as the Royal College of Midwives, Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, Baby Lifeline, and Global Air Training.
They are designed to increase safety and improve outcomes for the women who give birth in the unit and wider community. 
Staff who will be trained include midwives, obstetricians, obstetric nurses and anaesthetists. 
Chief Nurse Nancy Fontaine said: “We welcome this funding which will help to further improve our trust’s outstanding maternity department.”
The training will run throughout the new financial year. 
The Maternity Safety Training Fund programme has distributed more than £8m across all NHS trusts with maternity services in England to deliver training to improve maternity safety. 
Some 136 NHS trusts, including all 134 acute trusts with maternity units, have received funding to implement packages of multi-disciplinary training. 
It will focus on the key patient safety improvement areas of maternity team leadership, multi-professional team working and communication, human factors training, fetal growth and monitoring, plus midwifery, obstetric and CTG (Cardiotocography) skills and drills.

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