A zero infection rate in blood-borne MRSA and C.Diff. is helping a private hospital to expand its services.
The number of self-pay patients going to Spire Yale Hospital has doubled over the last five years and is continuing to grow.
As part of the strategy for future growth, the hospital has now appointed a new business development manager, Heidi Parker-Jones.
Since it first opened in 1988, skilled surgeons at the hospital have successfully carried out more than 52,000 procedures ranging from hip and knee replacements to bariatric and cosmetic surgery.
Throughout that period it has also managed to achieve a zero rating for both the bloodstream infection MRSA bacteraemia and Clostridium Difficile – C.Diff – which has been once again maintained over the past 12 months.
According to Mrs Parker-Jones, a mother-of-two, she had always wanted to work at Spire Yale Hospital.
With a background working in facilities management, she joined the team at Spire three years ago, initially as customer service team leader before being promoted to business development manager.
She recalled: “I used to drive past Spire Yale and I thought to myself, I’m going to work there one day.
“I love working with people and I think that was a big attraction for me, and I always thought that was something I would really enjoy.
“When the job for customer service team leader was advertised I applied and I was absolutely thrilled to be appointed.
“I’ll now be managing the customer sales team which looks after the self-pay patients that enquire within the hospital. It’s a big challenge but one that I am relishing
“I think for us the biggest message is that you don’t have to have insurance to come into the hospital, and we’re finding that people don’t always know that. They can some in and self-pay for consultations, treatments, they don’t have to have insurance.
“We need to let people know it is affordable and we offer zero per cent finance. So it’s just about us getting that message out and helping the patient along with their journey and getting speedy treatment.
“The facilities here are second to none and we have spent more than £500,000 on improvements over the past couple of years. We’re also doing some refurbishments to the patient rooms at the moment.
“In the 28 years we’ve been open we’ve seen over 300,000 patients for consultations and treatment and that number is growing all the time.
“Since the very first operation on November 22, 1988 our surgeons have carried out many thousands of procedures with differing levels of complexity.
“The majority have been orthopaedic operations, such as hip and knee replacement and spinal surgery as well as surgery on feet, ankles, shoulders and hands.
“Apart from orthopaedics, we have carried out lots of cataract surgery on patients’ eyes and also many gall bladder removals, hernia repairs and operations to correct varicose veins, along with a significant number of gynaecological procedures.
“Abdominal surgery has also accounted for quite a number of our operations.”
Mrs Parker-Jones added that over the years there had also been increasing demand for cosmetic surgery and weight loss surgery in which Spire Yale specialises.
She added: “We now carry out a large number of cosmetic procedures, ranging from breast augmentation and reductions to tummy tucks and liposuction and that number is also on the increase, whilst our weight loss surgery provides gastric bypass and gastric sleeve procedures.
“We’ve seen a big growth in the number of self-pay patients with numbers doubling over the last five years.
“Rather than wait for it to be done on the NHS, patients are deciding to forego their holiday and get their hip or knee fixed so they can get back to normal more quickly. That kind of thing is becoming more and more commonplace.
“Another factor is our zero rate of blood-borne infections which gives people reassurance and peace of mind. This combined with the opportunity to choose their consultant and to schedule treatment when it is convenient for them is making paying for treatment an appealing option for more and more people.”