Part of Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust



    The newsletter for Trust members with an interest in heart and lung care


      June 2021




New governors elected


The results of the 2021 elections to the Council of Governors have now been published. Congratulations to all those who have been elected and thank you to everyone who stood for election and all who voted.


The new governors that will represent Royal Brompton and Harefield hospitals include Trudy Nickels, chief executive officer, The Brompton Fountain (carer class), Victoria Borwick, Leah Mansfield and John Bradbury (patient class), Rishi Pabary (clinical staff class), and Sian Vincent (other staff class).


We look forward to featuring our governors in upcoming issues of Connect. To learn more about our governors and the important role they play in representing the views of our members, visit this link. To contact your governor, please send an email to:
















Celebrating our nurses on International Nurses’ Day


To mark International Nurses’ Day 2021, nurses from Royal Brompton and Harefield hospitals were interviewed to shine a spotlight on what the day means to them, what they love about their job, and the range of opportunities a career in nursing can offer. Organised annually by the International Council of Nurses, and held on Florence Nightingale’s Birthday, the day recognises the pivotal role nurses play in patient care, and the huge contribution they make to societies around the world. Watch the interviews here.





Fighting to survive: Channel 4 reports on a year of Covid-19 at Royal Brompton Hospital


Staff at Royal Brompton Hospital’s Adult Intensive Care Unit (AICU) were praised in an extended broadcast on Channel 4 News as health and social care correspondent, Victoria Macdonald, returned one year after visiting Royal Brompton Hospital in the first wave of Covid-19. Read more here and watch the piece here.








Risk of mortality from Covid-19 can be identified using five health measurements


The risk of mortality for Covid-19 patients can be identified using five measurements of health, a study by specialists at Royal Brompton and Harefield hospitals has found. The health measurements are used to produce a score that identifies the risk of death from Covid-19 on a scale of 0 (low risk) to 3 (high risk). From this score, it can be determined which patients need in-hospital care and who can safely return home and be monitored remotely. In the study, combining the five measurements proved to be more effective at predicating death from Covid-19 than age alone, the strongest single indicator of Covid-19 mortality. Read more.



Royal Brompton and Harefield’s expertise in heart and lung health reaches a global audience


Professor Michael Gatzoulis, academic head of the Adult Congenital Heart Centre and the National Centre for Pulmonary Hypertension at Royal Brompton Hospital, ran the International Preceptorship (IP) in pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) / adult congenital heart disease (ACHD) online this year, taking Royal Brompton and Harefield’s expertise in heart and lung health to a global audience. The IP is a clinical learning and sharing experience for medical professionals with an interest in PAH/ACHD, giving colleagues around the world the opportunity to learn about advances in the field, share knowledge, and discuss their own challenges and experiences.


Professor Gatzoulis said: “There is no better ‘book’ to learn from than a patient. And we are privileged in this respect at Royal Brompton and Harefield – the patients we care for and our highly experienced and expert teams present a significant learning opportunity for colleagues, senior and junior, from around the world.


“As an international specialist and reference centre we have a wealth of expertise and novel information to share, which is in keeping with our legacy – Dr Paul Wood in the 1950s transformed global cardiology from his base at Brompton. Our services and academic endeavours have been growing ever since. Under the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions we had to be creative and employ new ways of using technology to continue our operations, clinical or academic, but in many ways it meant that we could reach more colleagues and patients.”














Artificial Intelligence predicts best treatment for Covid-19 patients


Researchers have used Artificial Intelligence (AI) to predict which critically ill Covid-19 patients might respond to interventions carried out in an intensive care setting, such as proning – where patients are turned onto their fronts to get more oxygen into the lungs. This approach, where comprehensive patient data is analysed day-by-day, could be used to improve Covid-19 guidelines and determine the best clinical treatments. Read more.




Trust-wide summit sets the agenda for arrhythmia care


The annual London Arrhythmia Summit, held last month, was an example of Trust-wide collaboration, this year featuring an expert international faculty, and both faculty members and delegates from Harefield, Royal Brompton and Guy’s and St Thomas’.


Led by consultants Dr Shouvik Haldar and Dr Tom Wong, the event offered the opportunity to meet cardiologists and cardiac experts, who provided delegates with updates on important arrhythmia developments and changes, as well as live Q&A sessions.


Dr Haldar said: “This summit has been described as a ‘meeting that sets the agenda for arrythmia care’ and has continued to grow year-on-year with the support of many in our field.


“Our objective is to share the latest in arrythmia and pacing education and best practice in order to offer better care and treatment for our patients. This year we made time on the agenda to talk about what the future holds, particularly after a year of Covid. Many of our speakers and delegates made important observations about the opportunities and limitations of digital access in patient care for example, and what hybrid care pathways could look like.









Patient thanks Harefield team after ‘incredible recovery’ from Covid-19


An ambulance worker and father of six has thanked staff at Harefield for his ‘incredible recovery’ after he contracted Covid-19 in December last year. Gareth White, 38, was treated at Harefield Hospital, where he spent Christmas – and his son’s eighth birthday – fighting for his life.


Gareth told us, “My family were told they might have to prepare for the worst on Christmas Day. But the nurses and doctors – they did an amazing job. I can’t thank everyone enough.”


Dr Sundeep Kaul, consultant in intensive care and respiratory medicine at Harefield, commented: “When I saw Gareth recently he’d made an incredible recovery. For a young man his symptoms from Covid were severe. Like with many of our critical care patients, it took a multidisciplinary team approach to treat him. We were very touched when we received his ‘thank you’ card.”


Gareth is determined to get back to his normal life and continue building his strength. His road to recovery will be slow and steady – his lungs are not functioning as fully yet as they could be, and he has several check-ups with Dr Kaul’s team in the months to come. But he is now able to walk for two miles without getting short of breath and is looking forward to taking his children swimming.



Dr William Man receives research achievement award


Dr William Man, consultant respiratory physician at Royal Brompton and Harefield hospitals, has been awarded a Mid-Career Research Achievement Award from the American Thoracic Society (ATS), for his significant contributions to the practice of pulmonary rehabilitation.


Pulmonary rehabilitation is a treatment programme for people diagnosed with a lung condition which leaves them breathless. It involves a physical exercise programme tailored for individuals and advice on managing symptoms.


The pulmonary rehabilitation service at Harefield Hospital, led by Dr Man, is one of the largest and leading rehabilitation programmes in the UK with more than 1,000 referrals per year, and is the first and only clinical service to receive full national accreditation.


Alongside his clinical work, Dr Man runs several research projects evaluating the effects of pulmonary rehabilitation and other supportive therapies on the physical functioning, quality of life and prognosis of people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other chronic respiratory diseases.



  BBC Radio 4 interviews Dr Jonathan Hill


The Today programme’s Justin Webb interviewed Dr Jonathan Hill, consultant cardiologist at Royal Brompton Hospital, about using artificial intelligence (AI) to assist in angioplasty procedures. Dr Hill performed this AI-powered heart stent procedure in a UK first. It is thought that this new technology will help stents to last longer. Justin Webb’s own stent was inserted by Dr Hill. The episode is available to listen here.




Graft, grace and gratitude: encounters with the Royal Brompton Hospital archive


Date: Thursday, 10 June

Time: 6.00pm – 7.00pm

Location: online


Giskin Day, a principal teaching fellow at Imperial College London, where she leads on medical humanities, will talk about her experiences working with material from the historic archives of Royal Brompton Hospital, and the findings of her research so far.


To find out more about this event and to register, please click here.



Respiratory Symptoms - What could it mean?


Tuesday, 15 June

17.30 - 19:00

Online- MS Teams


Further details about this event and how to register will follow be email and will be be updated on the member event page shortly. 


National Carer's Week events

To mark Carers Week 2021, our patient and public engagement team are hosting a series of events to help support carers and patients through a range of online learning sessions and social activities. To learn more about each of the following events, click here.


Digital exclusion

Monday, 7 June

1 - 2pm

For more information and to register, click here. 


Benefits advice and support

Tuesday, 8 June

1 - 2pm

For more information and to register, click here.


Life administration

Wednesday, 9 June

1 – 2pm

For more information and to register, click here.


Seated yoga by Yoga Tree

Thursday, 10 June

1 – 2pm

For more information and to register, click here.



Friday, 11 June

1 – 2pm

For more information and to register, click here.


RB&HArts Events


Jazz Up Your Clothes


Thursday, 22 June


Online workshop

For more information and to register, click here.


Learn how to mend clothes in an artistic and fun way with textile artist Katie Nolan – no previous sewing experience necessary.


Harefield Garden Launch


Thursday, 8th July

12 – 3pm

Outdoor event

To register, click here

Join us to celebrate the completion of the new gardens at Harefield Hospital. With tours and gardens open to the public, it will be an opportunity to learn about the plants, wildlife and heritage of Harefield Hospital and grounds.


Events recordings:

In case you missed any of our recent events you can catch up on the recordings here

The latest event recording added: The role of genetics in diagnosing health conditions



Updates and events hosted by the charities supporting our hospitals


Royal Brompton & Harefield Hospitals Charity


Now that we’re opening up after months of lockdown, Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals Charity is pleased to be drawing up plans to hold some in person events.


We’re looking forward to seeing our supporters in person again and raising funds to help the brilliant staff at our hospitals, who have been working so hard during the lockdown.


On the 25th of July, the Charity will be holding our London Bridges Walk for the first time since the pandemic began. We hope that you can join us for a walk through Central London, taking in the city’s most famous sites via a route that winds across six iconic bridges over the Thames.


There are 5km, 10km and wheelchair-accessible routes available. All the funds raised will go towards our Patients’ Fund, which aims to improve the stay of patients at both our hospitals.


This event will conform to current Covid-19 guidelines for outdoor events and is subject to change or cancellation due to local or national lockdowns. We’re hoping that we can get back to holding our in person events as normal this summer, but we’re also taking every precaution to make sure that these events will be safe.


Do come and join us for a walk through some stunning urban landscape to help patients at our hospitals. We hope to see you there.


To find out more and sign up, click here.


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