Heart and Lung Fund plays important role

AT A meeting of the committee of the Pilgrim Heart and Lung Fund (PHLF) recently one or two of our new members pointed out that in their experience the majority of people they come into contact with have no idea what the charity is about or what it does.

They therefore asked me to contact you to see if you would publicise the following so that people are aware of the work that this charity does.

The commonest cause of ill health and death in the Western World is heart and lung disease.

The health service has always been short of funds and when I came to Lincolnshire at the end of the 1970s and Pilgrim Hospital was a new hospital there were little, if any, monies for the service or, in particular, equipment.

Due to the desperate need to get heart and lung services running I approached the public through a number of meetings and took advice from legal colleagues and other charity workers.

Through their help and advice I set up the Pilgrim Heart and Lung Fund charity in the early to mid 1980s.

This is a charity registered at the Charity Commission and with tremendous financial help and support from the public we have been able to provide an outstanding cardiorespiratory service at Pilgrim Hospital, to introduce new services and improve the quality of care for local patients.

The charity is ongoing and if we are to maintain the services as we have done in the past then we will, of course, continue to need financial support from local people.

The PHLF initially helped paramedic training back in the 1980s, cardiac rehabilitation to provide cardio resuscitation officers and to provide a mountain of equipment used for patients suffering from heart and lung disease.

This is primarily at Pilgrim Hospital but has also helped GPs in Spalding, Skegness and Boston. Recently the charity funded a cardiologist, radiologist and radiographers on a course for training in CT scanning of coronary artery disease.

A short while ago the charity purchased a new cardiac myocardial perfusion scanner for medical physics.

That item of equipment is used for looking at coronary arteries more closely in patients undergoing exercise testing where the exercise component is not specific for coronary artery disease but the clinical impression is that the patient suffers from that problem.

We are at the moment about to purchase an ECG machine for a pre-surgery assessment unit and that should be with us within the next few weeks.

The Pilgrim Heart and Lung Fund is therefore a vitally-needed charity to maintain a high quality service for patients suffering from heart and lung problems.

As in the past, we need your financial help to maintain this service for all our patients who are served by the Pilgrim Hospital.

Any donations would be appreciated and can be sent to the Cardiorespiratory Department at Pilgrim Hospital, Boston.

DR CYRIL R. NYMAN

Consultant physician, cardiorespiratory medicine