Jasper the Cockapoo named Employee of the Month at NHS Trust

A dog has been named 'Employee of the Month' at East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust.

Bosses say although therapy dog Jasper doesn't wear a uniform, he is guaranteed to put a smile on the face of patients and staff alike when he visits the hospital wards.

Jasper the Cockapoo completed a 10-week training programme to make sure he was prepared to work within a busy ward environment.

Hospital chaplain David Anderson, who is also Jasper’s owner said “Jasper is absolutely delighted to have been awarded Employee of the Month. It came as a wonderful surprise and we are truly grateful.”

Jasper is a therapy dog and always puts a smile on the face of patients on hospital wards. Credit: East Lancashire NHS Trust

Speaking about the benefits Jasper can have on morale, David says: “He’s not just here for the patients; he gives a real boost to the staff too. It’s good for the staff to have a laugh and a giggle, he brings a smile to their faces and that is the most important thing Jasper can do - make someone smile.”

Jasper received his award from ELHT’s Chief Executive, Kevin McGee. Kevin said: "Jasper has become somewhat of a local celebrity around the Trust.

"We have received some extremely positive feedback from patients, families and staff; not many people pass him in the corridors without stopping to say hello!

"I would also like to say a huge thank you to David for all the hard work he puts into making the therapy dog initiative happen. And indeed, all the other supportive work he carries out throughout the Trust."

On his days off, Jasper enjoys life just like any other family pet, going on long walks or chewing one of the many toys he has been gifted from his admirers.