A number of North West schemes have been successful in the latest round of bids and have secured funding for additional surgical hubs. Approval was received for 11 new schemes, bringing the number of additional surgical hubs in the region to 13.
Surgical hubs are being introduced to help reduce the Covid-19 backlogs and offer patients quicker access to vital procedures. They will focus mainly on providing high volume low complexity surgery, as previously recommended by the Royal College of Surgeons of England, with particular emphasis on ophthalmology, general surgery, trauma and orthopaedics (including spinal surgery), gynaecology, ear nose and throat, and urology. They bring together skills and expertise of staff under one roof – reducing waiting times for some of the most common procedures such as cataract surgeries and hip replacements. These operations can be performed quickly and effectively in one place. Improving quality and efficiency will mean patients have shorter waits for surgery, will be more likely to go home on the same day, and will be less likely to need additional treatment after surgery.
As the hubs are separated from emergency services, surgical beds are kept free for patients waiting for planned operations, reducing the risk of short-notice cancellations and improving infection control.
The new schemes include:
- Northern Care Alliance, Rochdale – low complexity ‘green’ pathway unit
- Lancashire Teaching Hospital – two schemes: creation of two new theatres and a third endoscopy room at Royal Preston Hospital; creation of a new Vanguard theatre to address both demand and backlog in Neurosurgery at the Royal Preston Hospital
- Christie NHS Hospital – an additional two wards on the Trust site
- Wirral University Hospitals – phase 2 of the South Mersey Elective Hub, including additional theatres and procedure rooms
- Manchester Foundation Trust – development of a ‘green’, day case and diagnostic facility on the Trafford site
- Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh Hospitals – development of a new ultra-clean theatre on the ‘green’ site at Leigh Infirmary
- Mid Cheshire Hospitals – construction of two-day case theatres and a treatment room to create an elective day case hub for Cheshire at Victoria Infirmary Hospital
- Southport and Ormskirk Hospitals – two mobile endoscopy units, one for each site. The Southport unit will be used as a permanent solution to increase capacity
- East Lancashire Hospitals – additional endoscopy capacity to support both cancer and non-cancer activity
- Warrington and Halton Hospitals – reconfiguration of theatres, ward and the endoscopy unit to provide additional capacity for the treatment of elective patients on a ‘green’ site
These new schemes are being supported with £115.9 million funding, bringing the total amount of TIF funding received for North West projects to £130.3 million.
Mid Cheshire Hospitals shared details of their scheme with patients and the public, which will provide state-of-the-art clinical areas to support patient care, including two theatres, recovery area and consulting rooms. The Cheshire elective hub is aimed at reducing cancellations of surgery on the day resulting from pressures on hospital capacity and will therefore significantly improve patient experience as well as reduce wasting valuable operating time.