"Exemplary service beyond the call of duty"

About: Tameside General Hospital / Cardiology

(as other),

I rang Tameside Hospital last week in some trepidation on account of some poor reports I had heard, enquiring about one of my long serving employees who had left us 18 months ago and was due to be undergoing heart surgery. I was not aware of the exact hospital, only the due date of the operation, and had been unsuccessful in earlier enquiries to a nearby ‘specialist centre – not here’. I was unable to contact my colleague on his mobile as his number was unobtainable and was concerned about his condition due to his health, the breakdown of his marriage, his very close affection for his son and his poor financial situation in a time of significant personal stress. My employee had been a very loyal member of staff for over 20 years and had fallen on ill health and had resigned his position on that account but has been held by me in sympathetic high regard.

My friend was not in Tameside Hospital either, but Lorraine Halliwell in your medical records section very helpfully said she would see what she could find out for me and ring me back. Within an hour or so, she had rung back and left a message in my absence, and when I rang her again she had actually found his records, address and telephone number. She had also rung him and asked if he would give permission to pass on the telephone details you held to me, so that I could speak to him. He was very pleased to pass on his details and I was subsequently able to speak to him and found that his operation had been cancelled and rescheduled at Wythenshawe in August.

Lorraine could not have been more helpful, understanding and considerate. At a time when the NHS generally and certain sectors specifically are coming under criticism, I want to speak up and commend exemplary service beyond the call of duty. There is considerable bad press about our hospitals, some of course justified. However I do want to just place on record that in my own experience the NHS has been first class, especially in critical situations, and it is very heart warming to have a service such as rendered by Lorraine. If she could be commended, I should like her to be, and if this is part of your management approach in increased customer satisfaction, then it has been achieved in high order.

You are probably well aware of Stephen Covey www.stephencovey.com who features improved outcomes through his Four Disciplines of Execution. Coincidentally yesterday on training on his website, I noticed that a large hospital was featured on his website using these disciplines, and experienced substantially improved user satisfaction. I considered that possibly by Lorraine’s service to me, you had instituted a similar program and you were therefore enjoying greatly improved outcomes.

With sincere thanks, and best wishes as you serve your sometimes ungrateful public!

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Response from John Goodenough, Director of Nursing, Tameside Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for taking the time to share your positive experience of Tameside Hospital.

I will make sure that Lorraine and her team are made aware of your kind words, which I’m sure will provide a well deserved boost.

With very best wishes

John Goodenough

Director of Nursing

‘’Would you like to help the hospital to improve its services further? We are currently looking for patients and carers to become involved in a development called “Patient Stories”. We want to know more about our services from the point of view of those who received them – what was good, bad, what could be improved, what should be changed. Want to know more about what’s involved? Please contact John Goodenough, Director of Nursing at


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