Spire Thames Valley Hospital have launched a campaign recently with a view to improving patients’ experience of surgery.

20 September 2019

The ‘Think Drink’ initiative, led by staff here at Spire Thames Valley Hospital including anaesthetists, surgeons, nurses and dietitians at the Hospital, aims to reduce the time patients are without drinks before surgery. Keeping patients hydrated makes for a quicker recovery from anaesthetic and shorter hospital stay.

Historically, in hospitals throughout the UK, patients were advised not to drink or eat from midnight the night before the operation, however recent evidence shows that remaining hydrated and drinking water up to two hours before surgery can have significant benefits.

The award-winning scheme originated a few years ago when a multidisciplinary team at Nottingham NHS Trust looked into the traditional advice about fasting before surgery and concluded it was outdated and in fact found that patients recovered more quickly if they had a drink up to two hours before surgery. 

Spire Thames Valley Hospital will now ensure this becomes daily practice to ensure patients stay hydrated. 

Linda Jones, Interim Director of Clinical Services at Thames Valley praised the initiative, “The ‘Think Drink’ campaign, which is being rolled out at Spire Thames Valley Hospital this week, has overtaken the old way of thinking and caused hospitals across the country to re-think. Changing patients’ perceptions of fasting is at the centre of this project. We will be talking to patients to explain the benefits and let them know they can have a small glass of tap water one hour before admission time. Staying hydrated can lessen nausea and helps for a faster recovery time from the anaesthetic which leads to better patient outcomes and an improved patient experience".

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