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Hospital staff celebrate patient's 100th birthday

Staff were determined Ivy would have a great day even if she was in hospital.

Published by Scarlett Bawden-Gaul at 5:51pm 1st May 2020. (Updated at 11:41am 4th May 2020) 3-minute read.

Hospital staff celebrate patient's 100th birthday

Wycombe Hospital staff have rallied to make sure a patient has a lovely birthday. 

Ivy Reeves celebrates her 100th birthday today and the nursing team at Wycombe Hospital, Buckinghamshire were determined to give her the best day possible. 

On April 12th Ivy experienced a seizure and went into hospital for treatment. A few days after this she was diagnosed with COVID-19 and has remained in the hospital since. 

The plan before coronavirus, and the lockdown, was for a party to be held at a tearoom with Ivy's friends, neighbours and family.

Despite this not going ahead the hospital were able to arrange special permission to visit her in hospital for these exception circumstances. 

Wearing PPE Alan Reeves was able to help her open cards (including one from the Queen), enjoy some cake and spend time with his mother at this difficult time. He said:

“It was magical to be able to do that, I’m very grateful.  The nurses have been spending time with her and they all sung ‘Happy Birthday ‘– she would have been celebrating her birthday with her family but now she’ll be with people who have become her friends.

“The nurses have been fantastic, just brilliant – they’ve given us good information, they’ve let us call to speak to her on the phone whenever we want. We really couldn’t ask for more.”

IVY reeves

Karen Bonner, Chief Nurse at Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, said:

“We understand how hard it is when loved ones have to be kept isolated. I’m really proud of our nurses who are trying to make the day special for Ivy, and who are helping her family stay in contact with her.

“We all hope she is able to have her planned celebration with her family and friends as soon as it is safe to do so.”

Ivy was born a century ago in Hanwell, London, the younger of two sisters.

She won a free scholarship to grammar school before starting work at 16. She married Don, a policeman, during the Second World War and lived in London through the blitz.

IVY reeves

The couple had three children - two boys and a girl. And today Ivy’s family spans five generations, having grown to include seven grandchildren, seven great grandchildren and four great, great grandchildren.

Ivy worked in various different jobs around Don’s duties as a policeman as she raised her family. For a time she was landlady of a pub in Exeter, before moving to Maidenhead in 1976, where she remains.

Don sadly passed away in 1988, and Ivy has lived independently ever since, overcoming several serious health concerns in recent years.  Alan puts Ivy’s longevity down to the fortifying nip of whiskey she still swears by in her morning cup of tea.

He added that the family still intends to throw Ivy her party:

“When she comes out of this we hope she’ll just get better and better and we can give her the celebration we planned.”

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