Live updates

Farnborough Samaritans support hospital

Samaritans support Frimley Park Hospital's emergency department Credit: NHS

Samaritans have been offering extra support for patients at Frimley Park Hospital in Farnborough.

The volunteers are around on Monday evenings to provideemotional support and comfort to anyone who needs it.

The scheme is being piloted for six months at the hospital but may be extended if it is a success.

Similar schemes are running at hospitals across the UK where extra emotional support is needed.

A hospital spokesman said: “The feedback from staff has been excellent. They have been really grateful for the extra support that the Samaritans has been able to provide.

"Although staff are trained to care for the whole patient, not just their physical injury or illness, a long night shift in the Emergency Department can be a real emotional strain.”.

Hospital merger on the cards?

The Boards of Heatherwood & Wexham Park Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Frimley Park Hospital NHS Foundation Trust are undertaking a joint exercise to investigate whether there could be benefits of a closer working partnership between the two hospital trusts.

The objective of the exercise will be to discover how improvements can be made to care across East Berkshire and surrounding areas. Frimley Park Hospital NHS Foundation Trust will be the lead partner in the analysis with full co-operation from Heatherwood & Wexham Park NHS Foundation Trust Hospital.

After an initial assessment, a decision will be made as to whether Frimley Park Hospital NHS Foundation Trust will fully investigate the effect of a potential acquisition. If the initial assessment does not indicate significant benefits, no further work will be undertaken.