Hospital wards all shaken up

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt meets matron Lisa de Jonge on the Marjory Warren ward at Kings College Hospital in London
Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt meets matron Lisa de Jonge on the Marjory Warren ward at Kings College Hospital in London

CHANGES to wards at Wigan Infirmary are part of the ongoing redevelopment of the hospital, health chiefs insist.

Last Friday, the hospital changed the function of many existing wards which they say was necessary given the development of certain departments on the site.

The changes also include a new patient processing area, called a Ambulatory Assessment Area, which doctors say will allow patients to be assessed in a timely manner, with the aim to provide a consultant review within ONE hour of attendance.

Wrightington Wigan Leigh NHS Foundation Trust (WWL) which runs Wigan Infirmary is currently in the midst of a £70m investment programme which will see a new oncology unit, education centre and surgical centre.

Andrew Foster, WWL’s Chief Executive, said: “The Trust’s directorates and divisions have worked hard together on this important project.

“Their dedication has ensured that the right number of wards, beds and services are available to achieve right patient right ward. These changes will improve the quality and effectiveness of our patients care and increase staff satisfaction.

“These ward changes form part of the Trust’s clinical services re-design project. These changes form part of the Site and Service Investment plan. By carrying out the Clinical Services Re-design now, the Trust is prepared for the start of the building works, which will include a large Surgical Centre, Essential Services Laboratory and a new Oncology Unit.

“This £70m investment, in our hospital facilities and services, will significantly enhance the quality of care and experience for our patients and visitors.

“The changes to the wards and services came into effect last Friday (November 9) when wards will move from their current locations to their new locations.

“As a result, it is possible that some of our patients may experience single or multiple ward moves. Whilst we will do everything we can to minimise disruption, noise and general inconvenience during these essential moves, some disturbance will be unavoidable however we are hoping patients and relative will please bear with us during this period as the result of this work will be a much better service for patients.”

The news comes in the week that the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) says more than 60,000 posts have either gone or have been placed at risk since the coalition came to power.

However, WWL bosses refute these claims saying that they are actively recruiting staff and investment is ongoing.

As part of the £70m investment plan,the Royal Albert Edward Infirmary in Wigan will see increased car parking, an education centre, a dedicated elective surgical centre, an oncology suite, more single room accommodation, a second MRI scanner and a pathology essential services laboratory.