Bassetlaw Hospital bosses welcome £14.9 million funding
Health chiefs have welcomed a £14.9 mililion investment at Bassetlaw Hospital.
The money, an investment announced by Health Secretary Matt Hancock during a visit with Prime Minister Boris Johnson to the hospital last month, will be spent fixing up the exterior of the hospital, and with it, the children's ward will be moved right next to the Emergency Department.
And now, after the general election saw Mr Johnson retain his position as Prime Minister, Bassetlaw Hospital chiefs have welcomed the investment and announced their plans for the future of the hospital.
Richard Parker OBE, Chief Executive at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals, said: “We very much welcome this investment into Bassetlaw Hospital. The funding will be used to refurbish our Emergency Department, substantially improving the patient environment while also helping us to move our assessments centres, including the Children’s Assessment Unit, closer to this service.
“One benefit of this, amongst many, will be that the change will allow us to substantially decrease the number of youngsters travelling between our sites as we will be able to provide a children’s observations area 24/7.”
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The Worksop hospital ward has struggled over recent years, with the ward closed between 7pm and 8am, costing the hospital £14,000 a month in transferring patients to Doncaster Royal Infirmary (DRI).
Mr Parker OBE said that this is ‘new money’ and not from existing budgets, and that the “redevelopment will provide expanded observations areas for adults and children. The children’s observations area will mean that the number of transfers to DRI will be significantly reduced. The majority of those transferred to DRI are for a short period of overnight observations and these children will be able to remain at Bassetlaw”.
In a report by your Guardian in January 2019, it was revealed that an average of 11 children per week had been sent to hospital in Doncaster since the closure, where there is a 24-hour paediatric ward.
The hospital has also struggled to hire paediatric nurses and staff in the past.
When asked ‘how will the hospitals manage staffing levels if nurses are expected to cover two departments at once?’, Mr Parker OBE said: “By collocating our paediatric services, it will mean that we can make better and more efficient use of the trained staff we have on site, making use of colleagues across one seamless service rather than two separate facilities in two different areas of the hospital.”
The proposed changes to Bassetlaw hospital are a priority for the trust, he added: “Patient safety is, and will always be a number one priority for the trust and in light of the significant, and sustained increase in attendances at the emergency department, we need to improve and expand this service.
“In doing this, we are also taking the opportunity to improve the flow between the emergency department and the assessment centres, as well as make better use of our colleagues.”