Diamond ring lost in hospital laundry found by NHS colleague 100 miles away

Suraj Shah, an anaesthetics registrar at The Royal Free Hospital in London discovered the diamond ring in his freshly-laundered scrubs, five days after they were worn by his NHS colleague in Suffolk.
Credit: Royal Free London Hospital Foundation Trust
Suraj Shah with the diamond ring which Radhika Ramsay thought she had lost forever. Credit: The Royal Free Hospital

An NHS consultant has been reunited with a diamond ring that she feared was lost forever after leaving it in the pocket of her scrubs.

Radhika Ramasamy, a consultant anaesthetist at the West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds had pocketed the jewellery while giving a patient a spinal anaesthetic.

After her shift, the clothing was taken away, cleaned and then sent to staff at the Royal Free London Hospital 100 miles away.

The ring was discovered five days later still in the pocket of the freshly-laundered scrubs by RFL's consultant registrar, Suraj Shah, while he was about to start his shift on the intensive care unit.

The Royal Free Hospital Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA

Mr Shah said: "As I put the scrubs on something clattered to the floor and a colleague spotted the ring and alerted me.

"At first I thought maybe one of the nurses here had lost the ring and I put the word out through the nurse in charge.

"I checked with the doctors as well but nothing so I contacted our facilities team.

“I knew how downhearted my wife would be if she’d lost a ring that had sentimental value to her so that was in the back of my mind.

"As healthcare workers we often take off rings for procedures so it’s an easy mistake to make."

The facilities team at The Royal Free Hospital contacted the laundry company and to their surprise Ms Ramasamy had already contacted them to report the ring missing.

Radhika Ramasamy thought she had lost her diamond ring for good after acccidentally leaving it in the pocket of her NHS scrubs Credit: West Suffolk Foundation Trust

Ms Ramasamy said: "I meant to put the ring back on afterwards but ended up doing another procedure and forgot about it.

"It wasn’t until the evening of the next day that I realised it was missing and then it was the weekend so I didn’t report it to my facilities team till the Monday.

"To be honest I never expected to get it back as I thought it would be crushed in the machinery at the laundry.”

She added: “I’m so happy to have it returned. It just shows how honest people are and I want to say a huge thank you to all the people involved – my end at the West Suffolk Hospital and at the Royal Free Hospital - in reuniting me with a ring that has real sentimental value to me as it was a birthday present from my husband a few years ago.

"I know it’s been an incredible team effort and I am so appreciative of how so many people have gone the extra mile to track me down and return it to me.”

Mr Shah said: “It’s nice to feel part of a bit of a little miracle. I’m delighted the ring has been reunited with Radhika.”

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