Today is Facilities Management day and here at UHDB we are lucky to have so many incredible facilities staff who work tirelessly to ensure that our patients, colleagues and visitors have the best experience they can while using our hospitals.
To mark FM day (Friday, 13 May) we want to recognise and shine a light on all the amazing work our facilities teams do across our five sites.
We spoke to Paul Brooks, Director of Patient Experience, Estates and Facilities at UHDB, who told us “we have a lot of heroes in facilities” who deserve to have a special day in their honour.
Paul said: “In the past they have been thought of as a back of house team but they’re not. You can’t get more front of house.
“Behind every mansion, hotel or hospital there is a facilities and services management team making sure everything runs smoothly.
“When you think about it the first person you speak to on the switchboard is the facilities team.
“Once you go through a ward door or a fire door there will be a locking system and it will all be installed and maintained by our team.
“Everything is cleaned and decontaminated by facilities staff and you know you are safe because our staff keep the linen clean and everyone fed.
“From the moment a patient parks in our car park all the way to when they are being cared for on our wards, you can guarantee that facilities management will have been with them every step of the way.”
Facilities Management oversees a variety of different roles, from car park attendants to switchboard, cleaners and porters and estates management, to catering and many more.
Paul, who started his career in facilities at the age of 16 as an apprentice plumber, said the job is exciting “because every day is different.”
He said: “The thing is every day is different, the interaction is different and that’s what makes it exciting.
“We may not be clinicians but we’re making a difference to patient’s lives.
“During the pandemic what’s been really impressive is how everyone has come together.
“We have a lot of heroes in facilities and we’ve lost brave people who put their lives on the line for their patients during the pandemic.
“The cleaners and porters treated patients with care and dignity and compassion and that is something we’re really proud of as a team.
“You can’t measure that and you can’t recruit for it.”
Paul said that he is “honoured that facilities staff have a day like this.”
He said: “It is great to see the staff being recognised for all they do.
“The celebration feels like we’ve been recognised and that’s enough. It makes us feel like we are part of the team helping to deliver healthcare.”