The Staff Lottery Bids Panel recently supported a project to provide specialist cups and straws to the residents of Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan who struggle with dysphagia (swallowing impairment).

Approximately 66% of Speech and Language Therapy patients of Community Resource Teams in Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan suffer with dysphagia. This increases the risks of liquid and food entering the lungs which causes discomfort whilst eating and drinking, chest infections, choking, weight loss, and dehydration amongst other symptoms. It can also cause patients significant amounts of social-emotional distress and a reason for them to withdraw.

Many of the Speech and Language Therapy patients who struggle with dysphagia have difficulty swallowing thin fluids which is often a result of neurological conditions like Parkinson’s disease, Stroke, and Dementia amongst many others. Usually having to include thickener in their beverages, the specialist cups would allow for patients to have more control over their fluid intake without using thickener. This would drastically increase their enjoyment of drinking beverages and improve their independence.

The CRT Speech and Language Therapists reviewed the cases of patients, and found that 90 patients per year would benefit from the provision of the dysphagia equipment. As well as significantly improving patient experience, the team also calculated that it would save a significant amount of the budget provided for thickener prescription per patient, which they will trial and evaluate in an aim to include the cups in the core budget.

Elin Evans, the Speech and Language Therapist who submitted the bid, said: “An extra benefit to this funding is a more equitable service can be provided for our patients, as in the past we would recommend purchasing this type of cup but not all of our service users had the means to purchase them.’

The Staff Lottery Bids Panel were happy to support this bid, as it promotes patient independence and significantly improves patient experience.

Why YOU should support the Staff Lottery!

The Staff Lottery Bids Panel endeavours to work towards all seven wellbeing goals set out by the Wellbeing of Future Generations Act whilst utilising the five ways of working; long term, prevention, integration, collaboration and involvement.

By joining the Staff Lottery, you are actively supporting a wide range of projects funded by the Bids Panel which enhance countless services across the UHB. Through this funding, you are helping the Bids Panel and Health Charity make things better for both our staff and patients, helping us all work together to create a more Prosperous, Healthier and Resilient Wales.

If you would like to join the Staff Lottery for a chance to win £1,000 each week, application forms can be completed electronically or via our website; Please return completed Staff Lottery forms to

If you would like to apply for funding from the Staff Lottery Bids Panel, please contact the above email address for details.

Cardiff & Vale Health Charity encourages you to join the Staff Lottery and apply for funding, which can enhance your department or service and inform others of the benefits of joining the Staff Lottery. And who knows, maybe you will be our next winner?

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