Will you help give hospital patients Christmas presents?

Emma McKay, director of nursing at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, la

Emma McKay, director of nursing at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, launches the campaign. - Credit: Archant

Norfolk's biggest health provider is appealing for the county's residents and businesses to help bring a smile to the faces of patients who spend their Christmas at hospital.

Many people, both young and old, will be denied the chance to be with their family over the festive period due to cruel illnesses and diseases - but you can help brighten up their Christmas.

The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is asking the public to donate small presents which nurses can hand out to patients on Christmas Day.

The trust aims to provide a present to every patient staying on a ward on December 25.

Emma McKay, the trust's director of nursing, said: 'We do all we can to help as many children and adults as possible spend Christmas at home, but unfortunately at times they are too poorly and it isn't possible.

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'Hospital staff work hard to make Christmas a happy time for patients and families of all faiths, but to make it extra special we would like the public to help by donating gifts.'

Suggested presents that are suitable to donate include perfumes, sweets, puzzle books, and cards.

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'We're determined that our patients do not miss out on the magic of Christmas, simply because they are in hospital,' Ms McKay said.

The trust aims to hand out around 900 presents. It has named its campaign 'Send a smile with Santa'.

Louise Cook, fundraising manager at the N&N, said: 'Christmas is about giving and we have been amazed at the amount of support shown to other Christmas appeals in previous years.

'Some of our patients do not receive any visits on Christmas Day so a gift shows that someone cares.'

All presents need to be unwrapped so that the nurses can ensure presents are personally picked and wrapped for each patient, and to make sure of adequate infection-protection.

For more information on the appeal contact Louise Cook on 01603 287107 or email louise.cook@nnuh.nhs.uk

Do you have a story? Email health correspondent Nicholas Carding at nicholas.carding@archant.co.uk

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