Patients at West Suffolk hospitals get free online entertainment services

Hospital patients in West Suffolk now have access to a wider range of free entertainment services – including TV, radio, games, newspapers and magazines – to make their stay more comfortable.

The new service at West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds and Newmarket Community Hospital also helps patients make video calls to family and friends, which has been seen as hugely valuable throughout the Covid-19 pandemic when visiting restrictions can be in place.

In addition to the free entertainment and media services, patients are able to use their wifi-enabled devices to access the Trust’s Patient Portal – a secure space to view hospital letters and documentation, appointment details and view test results online.

Patients can also discover NHS educational health videos to support their recovery as well as dementia support services such as BBC Music Memories.

West Suffolk Hospital charity My WiSH has purchased tablets for use by inpatients if they don’t have a smart phone or wifi-enabled device with them during their stay in hospital, so every patient has a chance to use the new service.

The service is being offered in partnership with technology company WiFi SPARK, which already supplies free wifi for hospital patients and staff.

Cassia Nice, head of patient experience and engagement at West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust said: “Being away from those you love when you are unwell, particularly with current visiting restrictions across the NHS, can be extremely difficult and days in hospital can seem long.

“Entertainment is important to people and the variety offered through WiFi SPARK, from games to magazines to your favourite television programmes, will certainly help to improve peoples’ experience of being in hospital. We are delighted to offer this service to our patients.”