We went to talk to Jan Bloomfield last month at West Suffolk Hospital. Jan is Executive Director for Workforce and Communications at West Suffolk and kindly gave up her time to talk about her views and experiences after being at the Bury hospital for 27 years. Jan said that January was a very busy time with a lot of elderly people being admitted; a lot of the time this is because people are not keeping hydrated enough. We talked about the challenges faced by the elderly who live alone and how important it is to check in on friends and neighbours who you suspect may need some support.
Off air we also had an interesting conversation about social isolation and loneliness, especially the fact that there are a lot of young people now who admit to feeling lonely. As Jan said, social isolation is not just an issue for those in rural communities but in urban parts of Suffolk it can be a huge problem too. This is another reason why it is so important for organisations to work together and raise awareness of the range of services available to people.
We visited Jan in the glorious Quince House where everyone was very friendly. Jan admitted that her office there was lovely and quiet and a great place to focus but she was quick to point out the importance of still being very present in the hospital and accessible for people to talk to. We certainly found Jan very approachable as well as being fun and very interesting to talk to, so a huge thank you, Jan Bloomfield, for giving up your time!