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New emergency unit to cater for children
8:40am Monday 4th March 2013 in News
CHILDREN in Swindon will soon have their own Emergency Department to cater specifically for their needs.
The move is part of a five-year refurbishment programme at Great Western Hospital, which continues this year with two big projects in the pipeline.
Between April and October, the ED department will undergo modernisation, but this will take place in phases to avoid disruption to patients.
Part of the plans will see a new Children’s ED developed where youngsters will be treated in a separate area.
The hospital is planning to fundraise for the department to help purchase toys, a television and other fun furnishings to help create a friendlier environment for young patients.
Leighton Day, deputy general manager for Unscheduled Care, said: “We want to modernise the department, creating a better environment for patients and also for our staff to work in.
“The project is planned in several phases to enable the department to function as normal whilst works are being carried out. The work will include making significant improvements to the reception and waiting area, re-flooring, and creating larger staff bases and handover areas.
“An exciting part of our refurbishment plans also involve creating a new Children’s ED, where children will be able to be seen and treated in a separate part of ED away from adults in a much more appropriate setting for their age, with the benefit of dedicated staff on hand.
“We are looking into fundraising to help us with kitting out the Children’s ED once it has been built with furnishings, decor and little extras like toys and a television to help create a friendly and calm environment for children, during what can be a stressful experience for them.
“Following the success of the abseil held at the hospital in December, we are planning to hold another abseil on May 18, with all the proceeds going towards the Children’s ED.”
During the same period, the hospital will also be refurbishing the radiology department, which will include the installation of a second MRI scanner.
This will help speed up diagnosis times and provide a useful back-up on occasions where the other MRI may be out of service.
Chief executive Nerissa Vaughan said: “During this year we will be continuing our ward refurbishment programme so that we maintain a good patient environment.
“There are two big projects which not only update what we currently have, but will help us go further to provide a better patient experience and a better working environment for staff.”
Other improvements planned for this year include Jupiter ward from July to September, phase one of the theatres from August to September, and the maternity department which will continue through the year.