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NHS Staff and patients attend special tea party to celebrate the NHS turning 70

NHS Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) gathered local NHS staff, patients and related charities together in Harpenden on Thursday 5 July to celebrate the NHS turning seventy years.

The ‘Big 7 Tea’ celebration, paid tribute to NHS staff and patients who have contributed to the health service over the last 70 years.

The party included a fantastic performance from the ‘Purple All Stars’, a Hertfordshire-based group of people with learning disabilities who use creative arts to get health messages across. There were also reflections of the past seventy years from two patient representatives who attend the Herts Valleys CCG Board.

Hertfordshire Independent Living Service kindly donated cake for the celebrations.

The NHS in Hertfordshire is also distributing 10,000 pledge cards to patients, residents and volunteers across Hertfordshire and parts of Essex. The pledge card is asking people to give something back to others and to the NHS on its 70 birthday. To make a pledge visit www.healthierfuture.org.uk/nhs70 and click on the pledges you would like to make. Examples of pledges include getting active, giving blood and eating a healthy and balanced diet.

Alison Gardner, Lay Member of the Herts Valleys CCG Board who compared the event, said:

“I want to thank everyone who attended and was involved in organising yesterday’s event.

“It was lovely to hear patients’ and staff’s experience of how the NHS has changed over 70 years. It was fascinating to hear Tracey Cooper, now Head of Adult Safeguarding at HVCCG, talk about her days as a newly trained nurse in the ‘80s ‘damp dusting’ wards and caring for patients.

“The Purple All Stars brought a serious message in an uplifting way which struck a chord with everyone.”

John Wigley, patient representative on the Herts Valleys CCG Board who spoke at the event, said:

“Over the last 70 years the NHS has become a source of national pride – a world class service that has survived the test of time. More than ever, the NHS today is under enormous pressure with a population that lives longer and huge advances in medical treatment. We are asking people in Hertfordshire to make a pledge to help the NHS on its special birthday getting active, volunteering or even giving feedback on NHS services.”

Celebrations for the NHS milestone birthday are taking place up and down the country over the next week, recognising the achievements of the NHS over the last seven decades.

For more information about the birthday celebrations, including local events, visit: www.nhs70.nhs.uk

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