A ring that travelled almost halfway across the country in the pocket of a hospital uniform has been safely returned to its owner.
Consultant anaesthetist Radhika Ramasamy at West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust in Bury St Edmunds said how ‘overjoyed’ she was to get the precious item of jewellery back.
She placed the ring in the pocket of her scrubs before giving a patient a spinal anaesthetic on December 14 last year.
She said: ‘I meant to put the ring back on afterwards but ended up doing another procedure and forgot about it.
‘It wasn’t until the evening of the next day that I realised it was missing and then it was the weekend so I didn’t report it to my facilities team until Monday.
‘To be honest I never expected to get it back as I thought it would be crushed in the machinery at the laundry.’
Five days later, anaesthetics registrar Suraj Shah discovered the ring in a pair of newly laundered scrubs ahead of his shift in the ICU at the Royal Free Hospital, more than 100 miles away.
He said: ‘As I put the scrubs on something clattered to the floor and a colleague spotted the ring and alerted me.
At first I thought maybe one of the nurses here had lost the ring and I put the word out through the nurse in charge.
‘I checked with the doctors as well but nothing so I contacted our facilities team.’
He added: ‘I knew how downhearted my wife would be if she’d lost a ring that had sentimental value to her so that was in the back of my mind.
‘As healthcare workers we often take off rings for procedures so it’s an easy mistake to make.’
Eventually facilities staff at Royal Free Hospital contacted the laundry, who said someone had indeed reported a missing ring in Suffolk.
Ramasamy said: ‘I’m so happy to have it returned. It just shows how honest people are and I want to say a huge thank you to all the people involved – my end at the West Suffolk Hospital and at the Royal Free Hospital – in reuniting me with a ring that has real sentimental value to me as it was a birthday present from my husband a few years ago.
‘I know it’s been an incredible team effort and I am so appreciative of how so many people have gone the extra mile to track me down and return it to me.’
Shah added: ‘It’s nice to feel part of a bit of a little miracle. I’m delighted the ring has been reunited with Radhika.’
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