Registered charity in England No 1144451

Affiliated to the British Heart Foundation

Meetings held at the Laindon Center Click for map

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A voluntary self-funding group of heart patients and their careers that help patients and careers face the future

Objectives and Overview Click Here

Welcome to the Hearts & Minds Website

Just to let you know what we are all about and what we do to help Cardiac Patients and their Careers

Donations to

Hearts & Minds

We have had a few people asking how they can donate to Hearts & Minds so we thought it would be a good time to place a link direct to our Just Giving page.

Click here for page

Remember, if you are a UK Taxpayer, please tick the Gift Aid box. For every £1 donated the government adds 25p. It’s free money for the group.

Next Meeting Monday 16th October 2017

Buddy System

We are very keen to establish a “buddy” network as part of the group’s continuing desire to provide practical support to patients and families who have experienced a cardiac event. We are seeking volunteers from within the group to offer their time to speak to patients who are recently discharged from hospital or about to go in to have a procedure or a carer who has a full list of worries and concerns for the wellbeing of their partner.  This opportunity to speak with someone who has gone through what you are about to can prove to be invaluable. We believe that everybody will benefit from speaking to somebody who has “been there, done that and bought the T Shirt” (you can actually buy the T Shirt from us!). This will not be a case of having people ringing you at all times of the day. The patients will be closely matched so that their condition matches your own and they will be told a time to call that is convenient for you. Please cast your mind back to your own event and consider how useful it would have been to have the opportunity to speak with someone.

Are you doing enough ? Click link below from the BHF

Lack of exercise may lead to twice as many deaths as obesity, study claims

Welcome to five new members

In the spirit of travel, exploration and adventure, please welcome

Ranulph, Philleas, Walter, Scott and Marco to the group.

As part of our aim to inspire people we want to get the message across that there are opportunities to live a fulfilled life after a cardiac event. An element of life that is important to many people is the ability to take a holiday. We already know that many of our members regularly manage to get away to various locations within the UK, Europe and fu  rther abroad. We need to let current patients know that, in most cases, travel is still an option. To enforce this we have purchased five travel teddies for members to take away on their travels. There are three criteria for taking one off the teddies away with you:

1. The teddy must come back in good condition,

2. You need to supply a picture to be put up in Rehab,

3.  Copy to for the website,

BHF have updated four of their popular booklets in the Heart Information Series about different heart conditions and treatments, including

blood pressure - peripheral arterial disease

 atrial fibrillation - heart transplant  

Click on the above links to download these booklets

Each booklet includes patient case studies and they offer a valuable source of information and support to patients and their families.

  From the Hospital  

Heart patients group raises £50,000 for hospital equipment and offers two defibrillators to the community

Patients with heart conditions at Basildon University Hospital and The Essex Cardiothoracic Centre (CTC) are benefiting from specialist equipment, thanks to the fundraising efforts of a local cardiac support group.

Basildon Hearts and Minds is run by people with heart problems and offers support and information to others who have conditions such as angina and heart attack. They work closely with the hospital cardiac rehabilitation teams.

The group has also purchased two life-saving defibrillators and is inviting local clubs, schools and businesses to apply to receive one.

Fortunately for Tony, Club Kingswood in Basildon has a defibrillator and he was resuscitated by staff who performed CPR and defibrillation after finding him collapsed.

He was taken to the Essex Cardiothoracic Centre at Basildon Hospital, and had a quadruple by-pass operation. Following surgery he completed cardiac rehabilitation and has made a good recovery. Doctors said that the fact he was very fit meant the damage to his heart was reduced.

He added: “I wasn’t really aware of defibrillators before but I owe my life to the team at the gym and the fact they had a defibrillator. I was so lucky they had installed it.”  

Issued by: Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Communications Office

Winners of our defibrillator competition held in November last year were The Pitsea Mount Community Association. Showing some the group at the training session with there newly donated defibrillator

October 16th – Kevin from Headway, the support group for hypoxic brain injury. And the connection this can have with having a heart attack

October 19th 2017 - Back by popular demand! The Curry Night. This will be held at the Tandoori Parlour on Thursday 19th October. Ticket, priced at £12.50 are on sale.  And there will of course be a raffle.

Contact Wendy on 01268  552701

 Members of Hearts and Minds join hospital staff to celebrate the opening of the new lounge for patients and carers

Heart patient group adds a homely touch to the Essex Cardiothoracic Centre and members of Hearts and Minds join hospital staff to celebrate the opening of the new lounge for patients and carers

 Patients at the Essex Cardiothoracic Centre (CTC) can now relax before and after their treatments in a lounge with home comforts, thanks to a donation from a cardiac rehabilitation support group.  Basildon Hearts and Minds is a charity run by heart patients, working with clinical staff at the CTC, offering support and information to people with heart conditions, along with their relatives and carers.

The group gave £2,400 to pay for an unused room on Chelmer ward to be decorated and equipped with furniture, a television, a water cooler and a kettle and the new lounge was officially opened on 13 September by Danny McCormack, general manager of the CTC, with invited guests from Hearts and Minds and hospital staff,  including Colin Barrow, building craftsman, who renovated the room.   

Danny said: “Hearts and Minds have been doing wonderful work for the benefit of patients for many years and this is a shining example of that. It is invaluable to have their support and involvement to help determine improvements for the people from Essex and the whole country who use our services.”  Feedback from patients who have been treated at the world-class heart and lung specialist centre at Basildon Hospital is overwhelmingly positive, and many of them said that a lounge would be a welcome addition.  

Liz Shaughnessy, manager of Chelmer ward, said: “A lot of people mentioned that they would appreciate being able to make a hot drink without having to ask busy staff. And it’s also very positive for patients and carers to have a place to meet and share their experiences.

Guests at the opening included Jim Roberts, 64, from Brentwood, who had a heart procedure in the CTC last year. He subsequently joined the Hearts and Minds support group and is now chair.  Mr Roberts said: “I received excellent care at the CTC – within an hour of collapsing in my local high street I was in theatre.”    Also at the opening was Colin Blackall, from Benfleet, with his wife Gillian. Mr Blackall donated two pictures for the new lounge. He was the first patient to have a quadruple by-pass at the CTC, shortly after it opened in 2007. He was 73 when he had heart surgery, and ten years later remains in good health

 Issued by: Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Communications Office