Some of you reading my blog will have received our latest edition of News Beat. If you haven’t and would like a copy – let anyone in the Charity know and we would be only too delighted to send you a copy and share with you the news and stories in our new look edition. Or read it online here.   

I have the very lovely job of reading some of the letters and emails which come in when our supporters read News Beat. Patients and families like to tell us about their experiences and how their lives become even more precious when they have literally been given their lives back again. 

I received one such letter from a lady who wrote saying that she never forgot Harefield or the doctors and nurses there because her husband was given days to live before his transplant. After his transplant, he lived for 23 more years. He sadly passed away some time ago now, but she still thinks of those extra 23 years – time that enabled him to play with his grandchildren, travel, and enjoy the garden, walks, family suppers. Her letter is not unusual – just as my job is not a usual one.

How many people can go to work and know that by the end of the day, something has happened which will make someone’s life better – money will be raised for an Organ Care System which will have saved a life, like the lady in this letter. Or someone will have enabled the clinical team to buy some spirometers so someone with cystic fibrosis can monitor their condition at home instead of making the exhausting and expensive journey into Royal Brompton. 

As you may know, our much loved and respected Trustee, Professor Tim Evans died last year. Of course Tim was a great many other things as well as our Trustee, holding many impressive formal positions within Royal Brompton and Harefield Foundation Trust and elsewhere. He was also a mentor, an inspiration and a friend to many. Two Fellowships have been set up in his name here at Royal Brompton. 

The first is a Travelling Fellowship which will support a doctor in training to present at and attend the prestigious annual American Thoracic Society (ATS) meeting. This major meeting is a chance for those earlier in their career and those who already have international recognition within our clinical specialities to meet, learn, collaborate and present fresh ideas.

The second will pay tribute to Tim’s work over many years linking Chelsea & Westminster and Royal Brompton Hospitals to train junior doctors in the disciplines of  anaesthesia and intensive care medicine. The Fellowship will last for 12 months, allowing one doctor per annum to train in anaesthesia at Chelsea & Westminster for 6 months, before returning to Royal Brompton to further their training in intensive care medicine.  If you would like to donate to this memorial fund to support these two Fellowships, please click here, where it tells you a bit more about the ambitions we will be creating to mark the passing of this very special man.