Mayor backs diabetes hub plans at RLI

The Mayorl of Lancaster visited the Royal Lancaster Infirmary
The Mayorl of Lancaster visited the Royal Lancaster Infirmary

The Mayor of Lancaster has made it his mission this year to help raise funds and awareness for a new diabetes hub in the city.

Skerton Coun Robert Redfern was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes in 1980 and has attended the Royal Lancaster Infirmary (RLI) diabetic clinic every three months since his diagnosis.

When he heard that advanced nurse practitiioner Deborah Whittle was leading a project to establish a diabetes hub for the North Lancashire area he made it his mission to help raise funds.

Coun Redfern got a big boost when he opened the new Primark store in the city.

The company gave £5,000 towards the hub, his chosen charity. His original target was £3,000.

He said: “It’s great to see the transformation of the building is going so well.

“Diabetes is a growing concern and I feel that it is important for more people to get together to support each other. The services that are provided will help so many people in the future.”

Deborah Whittle added: “I personally would like to thank Councillor Redfern for his support. The vision is that our diabetes hub will be seen very much as an education and research centre allowing expansion of the initiatives introduced by Janet Singleton and Katherine Mason with the hub acting as a dedicated centre for patients with diabetes, facilitating multidisciplinary team working with the provision of specialist outpatient services, and help to support the education of staff and patients on self-care - important aims of the Better Care Together strategy which the Trust has adopted along with 11 other partners.”

University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Trust approved an investment of £75,000 towards the project, which will be housed in Medical Unit 1. The project itself was set up as part of the Trust’s Listening into Action (LiA) initiative, which was launched in September 2014 to put the power back into the hands of Trust staff who lead on the improvements that they think the Trust should make for patients and staff.

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The Right Worshipful the Mayor of Lancaster, Councillor Robert Redfern, visited the Royal Lancaster Infirmary to see how refurbishment work is going to transform the former Coronary Care Unit in Med Unit 1 into a centre dedicated to specialist Outpatient services for people living with Diabetes in North Lancashire.

Councillor Redfern Councillor Redfern was sworn in as Mayor of Lancaster District on Friday 13 May.

The Mayor officially opened the new Primark store in Lancaster City Centre and was delighted to receive a donation of £5,000 for his charity, which is to raise funds for the Diabetic Hub through the Morecambe Bay Hospitals Charity. His original fundraising target for the Hub was £3,000, which he has already exceeded.

Councillor Redfern, who has served on the council for 17 years, said: Plans for the Diabetes Hub at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary (RLI) took a massive leap in the right direction after Foundation Trust (UHMBT) approved an investment of

Paula Richardson, Head of Charity and Fundraising, UHMBT, said: “We are

extremely grateful to our incoming Mayor for choosing a cause close to his heart

during his term in office; Diabetes is something that affects so many people across

the country.”

Morecambe Bay Hospitals Charity is a registered charity that raises funds and supports UHMBT’s five hospital sites. Donations received go to providing those little extras that help make the hospital experience better or improve outcomes for patients. Money is used to fund additional medical equipment, medical research,

specialist training and service improvements. It is the generosity of the local

communities that enables the charity to enhance and support the hospitals across

Morecambe Bay and the lives of the 365,000 people that live here.

The Mayor will be holding a fundraising evening with food and drinks at the

Banqueting Suite at the Town Hall, Lancaster, on Friday 7 October 2016. Tickets

cost £12 and are available from the Mayor’s Office on 01524 582065. A Christmas

Bash will also be held at the Town Hall on Friday 2 December.