Hillingdon Hospital

Hillingdon Hospital

Our ongoing commitment to people and the planet helped us win the catering contract for Hillingdon Hospital. Teams from across the trust were consulted, including facilities, nursing, dietetics, finance and procurement, as well as governors.

As a result, since moving to apetito as their food provider, Hillingdon Hospital has seen patient satisfaction increase to over 90%, as well as the hospital’s sustainability goals met, all while prioritising patient welfare with apetito’s wide range of delicious, quality meals.

Food as medicine

Anne Byrne, Facilities Manager at Hillingdon Hospital highlights why food is so important to patient welfare.  

“Food is considered part of the patient medication. It’s part of their recovery and it’s really important that food is served hot, it’s presented nicely and it looks appetising. Everything that you do, especially working in the patient environment, is all about making things better for the patient.

“Across our two hospital sites we have in the region of 600 patients, and we must ensure they receive hot meals for lunch and dinner, seven days a week.”

Catering challenges

Anne goes on to explain some of the challenges Hillingdon Hospital previously faced with their catering operations and during mealtimes, and why apetito were chosen as the new food supplier.

“A key catering challenge that we had before our relationship with apetito was around the process that we had in cooking our meals. The system we had in place, it was a lengthy process. Over the course of the mealtime it would take up to an hour to serve an average 30 bed ward. 

“We really felt it was time that we moved away from that methodology of cooking. We wanted to bring in some innovation and look at some new ways of delivering meals to patients.”

“A key part of the tender was around respecting the environment, and apetito’s record on sustainability was a major success factor in them winning the contract. We were particularly impressed with the range and the taste of apetito meals, as well as the commercial offer, enhancing our well-recognised, high-quality patient meal services.”


Once apetito had been chosen as the new food supplier for Hillingdon Hospital, they received dedicated support from the apetito team, including Training & Operations Managers, who offered training and help to ensure hospital staff understood the apetito system, as well as managing the mobilisation. 

Anne explains, “Once the appointment to apetito had been confirmed, we quickly started to work on the implementation process: designing the menus, choosing the food, tasting the food, holding various training sessions with staff, particularly those who load and pack the trollies, and take part in the ordering processes. 

“Everything changed, but there was amazing support from apetito until we were absolutely comfortable to manage the system on our own.” 

The results

Since implementing the apetito system at Hillingdon Hospital, they have been able to improve their catering operations resulting in increased patient satisfaction, as well as reduced wastage. 

Anne states, “The patient has a better experience, the staff are very confident picking and packing the trollies, the food is handled less, we only cook what we need, and the patients are actually eating more food. As a result, plate wastage has reduced.”

“Our results show us that patient satisfaction is well up above 90%. It is very important that we have a very strong and reliable relationship with apetito around the supply of patient meals. I would recommend apetito based on our experience here at this organisation. We are collaborative partners working to improve the patient experience.”