18 February 2013 – Digging deep to help Airedale’s endoscopy patients
Building work is well under way to create a bigger and better endoscopy unit at Airedale Hospital.
The £2.4m unit is expected to be finished by the end of June and will allow more procedures to be carried out in the future. It is being built by Willmot Dixon and will also help address the current capacity issues by providing an extra procedure room.
Patients, staff and members of the local community are being asked to support a fundraising appeal, launched by the unit last Christmas, to fund £60,000 worth of new endoscopy equipment.
The new unit is planned to open at the end of July. It is being rebuilt and expanded to deal with the increase in demand for the service as a result of the national bowel screening programme – Airedale Hospital is one of the local screening centres – and other national awareness campaigns for bowel, bladder and lung cancer. From 2014 there will be a further increase in demand due to a national reduction in age for bowel cancer screening from 55 years to 50 years of age.
Designed to meet standards for environment, decontamination, training, workforce, clinical quality and quality of the patient experience set by the national Joint Advisory Group on Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (JAG) which certifies all endoscopy centres, the new unit will offer same sex facilities in all areas where this is necessary, for example, dedicated male and female waiting areas for when patients have changed into gowns. It will provide a meeting or teaching room fully equipped with audio visual equipment to stream video from procedure rooms for discussion during teaching sessions.
Julie Blackburn, sister on the endoscopy unit, said: “We are really pleased with how the new unit is developing, we are about a third of the way through the building work. It will provide patients and staff with facilities that address privacy and dignity issues and are fit for delivering high quality care in the 21st century.
“It will also help us to grow our business for the hospital, deal with the increase in demand for our services and allow patients to be seen more quickly following referral from their GP”
A fundraising appeal was launched at Christmas to raise more than £60,000 for new endoscopy equipment. This includes an endoscopy video processor, which helps to diagnose patients more quickly and provides a clearer image for the clinician; and entonox hoses which allow procedures to be carried out without sedating patients allowing them to drive home in less than an hour instead of possibly staying overnight in hospital.
If you want to make a donation to the appeal either text ENDO60 followed by £ and the amount you want to donate to 70070 or visit www.justgiving.com/AiredaleEndoscopyChristmasAppeal