Cash to improve patients' treatment

HUNDREDS of patients waiting for treatment at West Suffolk Hospital are set to benefit from a massive investment in some areas of surgery.A £5million Government boost will pay for a new Diagnostic and Treatment Centre, catering for patients who need an operation but would not require an overnight stay on the wards.

HUNDREDS of patients waiting for treatment at West Suffolk Hospital are set to benefit from a massive investment in some areas of surgery.

A £5million Government boost will pay for a new Diagnostic and Treatment Centre, catering for patients who need an operation but would not require an overnight stay on the wards.

The centre will feature a third new ultra clean orthopaedic theatre, bringing the total number of theatres at the hospital to nine, and two new day surgery theatres. The latter will extend the number of theatres in the Day Surgery Unit at the rear of the hospital site to four.

The new theatres, which will take around 12 months to build, will allow the Trust to treat around 2,800 extra cases a year, including 800 hip and knee joint replacements and 2,000 day case cataract operations.

John Parkes, chief executive of the West Suffolk Hospitals NHS Trust, said: "Investment in a Diagnostic and Treatment Centre will have a fantastic impact on the time patients have to wait for surgery across Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire.

"As well as increasing capacity it will also bring about the introduction of modern new ways of delivering services, setting new standards of clinical care and patient convenience and choice."

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The money is part of a £68 million investment announced by the Government as part of a series of measures designed to boost NHS capacity in both primary and secondary care.

Jane Harper-Smith, West Suffolk Hospitals NHS Trust, director of modernisation, said: "This is great news for patients requiring hip and knee replacements or a cataract operation, who tend to wait longer for surgery because demand is so high. They can be booked into the Diagnostic and Treatment Centre, at a time convenient to them, speeding up their treatment – it will be driven by patient choice.

She added: "As well as being seen faster, patients will experience new models of care from multi-professional teams comprising nurses, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, radiographers and pharmacists working together at all stages of the patients care and keeping them fully informed throughout their treatment."

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