The following information has been provided by Dr C R Nyman, Consultant Physician (on Cardiorespiratory Medicine) and President of the Pilgrim Heart and Lung Fund.
The idea of a Heart and Lung Fund at the Pilgrim Hospital appeared in 1986. Then, as now, there was already a Boston branch of the National Charities of the British Heart Foundation and British Lung Foundation. These two charities, however, predominantly and quite rightly collect funds to support research projects into diseases of the heart and lungs. A percentage of funds collected for these charities can be used to fund equipment at local hospitals but the actual type of equipment permissible via the same is dictated by the constitution of the said charity. The Heart and Lung Fund is a local charity and all monies donated to it are used to provide equipment to investigate, and support services to treat patients suffering from heart and lung disease. Local people including doctors, technicians and other health service workers in the field of heart and lung medicine in South Lincolnshire decide how the money should be used to help these patients. The charity is therefore, in the best position to determine what equipment and service is appropriate to fulfil local needs. [Top Of Page]
The last few decades has seen a fluctuating economy in this country. This has resulted in funding for the Health Service being one of the lowest in Europe. We are hopeful that with the appearance of the National Service Framework (NSF) for Heart Disease, that this situation will change dramatically in the years ahead. However, there inevitably, will be a shortfall. In this situation we can either sit back and leave things as they are with the result that local people may still have to travel vast distances to get certain tests performed on them or we can attempt to rectify it by obtaining public support and providing the necessary equipment through charitable means for our local Hospital. In addition to the foregoing, the public at large, despite much information now pushed through the media, still appear to be unaware of the magnitude of illness and death caused by diseases of both the heart and lungs. It follows from this that there is correspondingly lack of public funding for charities supporting heart and lung disease. The chart demonstrates quite clearly the discrepancy between death and disability due to diseases of these two major organ systems and the amount of funds available both from the public sector and from charities to support them. (Click on the graph to see the data in tabular format.) [Top Of Page]
Since the fund was set up in the mid 1980s, the Appeal has raised well over £1,000,000.00. This money has been used to provide the equipment itemised here.
In addition to this the Appeal has also funded 2 Cardiac Rehabilitation Nurses, a Resuscitation Training Officer for Pilgrim and South Lincolnshire, additional Technical support for the Department of Cardiorespiratory Medicine, has assisted in the extension of a Pacemaker Checking Service in South Lincolnshire and eventually in the next year or so Pacemaker Implantation. CCU is now on the ground floor, close to the A & E Department, Medical Admissions Unit, X-ray Department and the Cardiorespiratory Department. This has been costly, but will provide the best service possible for local people suffering from heart attacks. The PHLF has helped provide funds for such a project.
The Appeal has come a long way since its initiation in the mid 1980s but still has a long way to go. We can only achieve what we feel is appropriate for our local patients with ongoing local generous help. We therefore, hope that you will see fit to give this charity your maximum support. [Top Of Page]