STAFF at Southend Hospital will now introduce themselves to patients as part of a campaign to improve care.

The hospital is one of more than 90 NHS organisations nationwide supporting the launch of the #hellomynameis campaign.

The campaign aims to encourage staff to introduce themselves so that patients know who is caring for them. It all starts with a simple introduction – “hello my name is….” but makes a real difference for patients.

Kate Granger, the campaign’s founder, is a doctor but also a terminally ill cancer patient. During a stay in hospital, Kate made a stark observation that many of the staff looking after her did not introduce themselves before delivering her care.

With her husband’s help Kate started the #hellomynameis campaign on Twitter to encourage staff to introduce themselves to their patients, something she believes to be vital to establishing a human connection and delivering compassionate care.

Southend University Hospital’s executive team, led by acting chief executive, Sue Hardy, feel strongly that the #hellomynameis campaign message represents a cornerstone of relationships between staff and patients.

Mrs Hardy said: “This campaign is more than just saying hello in a nice way, to me it epitomises the values that underlie our work in healthcare – kindness and compassion.

“It shows an understanding that, for a patient, their stay in hospital is often an anxious and difficult time. Introducing yourself goes a long way to establishing a professional relationship and does a great deal to put patients at ease.”

To kick start the campaign members of staff will be having their photos taken with the #hellomynameis poster.

In addition staff from all areas of the hospital – whether medical, nursing, administrative or support staff – have been asked make a special effort to introduce themselves to patients.