12th September 2013 – Planners give green light to Airedale’s new A&E
Bradford planning chiefs have given the green light to developing a new Emergency Department that is fit for the 21st century at Airedale Hospital.
A work schedule will be finalised by Airedale Hospital’s Board in September and it is hoped that building will start towards the end of the year, after the current department has been demolished. The work is expected to take between 10 and 12 months and plans are already being made to move the emergency department into the hospital’s former endoscopy unit next month (October) on a temporary basis. A brand new purpose-build endoscopy unit opened on the ground floor of the hospital this summer.
Dr Meg Crossley, a consultant in emergency medicine at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust and clinical lead for the project, said: “This is great news for both staff and patients as it means that we will have an Emergency Department that is fit for purpose.
“We will continue to work with our parish council and neighbouring residents to address any of their concerns whilst the new unit is being built.
“The new department would be a huge improvement on our current facilities and will provide better privacy and dignity for our most vulnerable older patients and their families and carers.”
Airedale Hospital’s A&E department deals with over 55,000 patients every year and staff struggle daily to find enough room to see and treat patients. Its current facilities were designed and built in the 1960s to deal with fewer patients.
Technology also now plays a much bigger role in treating emergency patients and the department’s small cubicles cannot accommodate equipment currently used.
Plans are to create separate adult and children’s waiting areas, a quiet room for friends and families to use during stressful events and a separate screened entrance for ambulances.Treatment rooms would also be fitted with appropriate technology allowing A&E staff to see the results of X-rays and blood tests at the patient’s bedside.
The new A&E department is estimated to cost around £6m and will be better equipped to cope with peaks in demand by providing a central staff hub at the heart of the treatment area. It will enable staff to monitor patients more easily and better observation facilities will help reduce the need for unnecessary admissions to hospital.