Government funding a '˜morale boost' for QA staff and patients

A MULTIMILLION-pound cash injection for two new state-of-the-art operating theatres will give hospital staff and patients a boost in morale.

Monday, 2nd April 2018, 7:00 am
It is hoped the new operating theatres will be up and running in a year Picture: Shutterstock

That is the message from Queen Alexandra Hospital, in Portsmouth, after the Department of Health and Social Care announced it has been successful in a bid for funding.

Matthew Wood, chief of service for Critical Care, HDU, Anaesthetics and Theatres, welcomed the money and the impact it will have at the Cosham hospital.

As previously reported in The News, £17.5m was given to the Solent Acute Alliance which oversees the county’s hospitals and health sites.

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It will be split between Portsmouth and Southampton.

Mr Wood said: ‘This funding is really good for the morale of staff as well as the patients at a time that has been difficult.

‘It is a real vote of confidence in the new executive team that the trust can get this money.’

The money will see QA Hospital’s operating theatres for general surgery increase from 27 to 29. It will be kitted out with the latest equipment to offer the best care for patients.

Mr Wood added: ‘I was lucky enough to be involved in designing the new theatres when the PFI contract was agreed and they were built.

‘We always had plans to expand the theatre capacity when it was needed. We have been working with the executive team to put together new theatres because we need them to support population growth.

‘We have been bidding for various sources of money and now we have this funding, we can now continue our plans in a bit more detail.’

Mr Wood said the new theatres will not only help with population growth but help the hospital keep on top of its elective surgery.

Over the winter months QA had to stop non-urgent elective surgery, most of which was from the orthopaedic department.

Mr Wood said this funding will mean they can get orthopaedic surgery back on track.

‘Most of the increased work will be to support orthopaedics,’ he said.

‘It has had a torrid time in the past few months and we had to outsource orthopaedics work. That costs money and doesn’t bring money into the trust. Our orthopaedics unit has got a very good reputation and we want to support that with this expansion.’

Now the funding has been given, QA Hospital will start finalising its plans with the hopes of starting work on-site within six months.

It is aiming to have the new theatres ready in a year.

Mr Wood added: ‘It really just helps us increase our ability to do as much as we can.’