Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals are saving thousands of lives each year. Sometimes through heart or lung transplants, sometimes by emergency cath lab procedures on people having heart attacks, and sometimes by administering lifesaving treatment for cystic fibrosis or chronic asthma.

Being in hospital is more than major surgery and life saving procedures. The care that our amazing NHS colleagues provide involves little things as well as big. Sometimes a small act of kindness can have a huge impact on a patient’s stay in hospital.

Last Friday was World Kindness Day and we asked our patients and NHS staff to share with us stories of small acts of kindness that brightened up a patient’s day. We were overwhelmed by the outpouring of generosity that we received, so we wanted to share some stories with you.

Clinical Fellow Isaac Wolff shared some photos of a transplant patient painting his nails. Isaac promised she could if she walked the length of the ward, a crucial step in her recovery. We think they look very fetching, Isaac.

Heart valve disease patient Keeley Hellyer wanted to share a story about Phlebotomists Debbie and Linda from Oak ward who: “took the time to find me on each of the 5 wards I was transferred to during my 6-week stay and bought me Costa coffees!” Keeley added: “It’s the little things that meant so much to me and these ladies made my stay. I’m forever thankful for them.”

Kathleen Grabowski has been a patient for years at the Royal Brompton Hospital. “I have received so much kindness from the medical staff. Two wonderful Doctors went beyond the call of duty. They are Dr Margaret Branthwaite, she listened with such care and compassion, and Dr Said Abdallah, a true gentleman who cares so much about all his patients.”

Intensive Care Consultant Soliman Aboumarie wanted to highlight the tremendous kindness he saw during the peak of the pandemic. “I was personally moved by seeing one of our senior surgeons coming to help with the basic proning manoeuvres along with other members of the team. This was, undoubtedly, instrumental in the great outcomes of our patients who were extremely unwell and between life and death."

It’s things big and small that make us so proud of our hospitals. Not just the life-saving treatments our patients receive, but also the little things that can put a smile on someone’s face.

We want to say a big thank you to everyone who shared their stories with us and anyone who showed a kindness, of whatever size, to make someone else’s day that little bit nicer.

We would love to hear from you if you have a story about an act of kindness in one of our hospitals. You can share your story with us here.