A major extension and upgrade to Musgrove Park Hospital’s emergency department has been officially opened by former England opening batsman and current Somerset captain, Marcus Trescothick.
The department has undergone a £2.9 million expansion and makeover creating four additional major treatment bays, three ambulance handover bays and an additional resuscitation bay. The work began in April 2013 and was completed in December 2013.
The expansion, which is part of a series of improvement works taking place around the hospital site to improve the quality of care and the environment for patients, means that the hospital can more effectively cope with the increasing numbers of critically ill or injured patients attending the department, many of whom have very complex medical histories.
Musgrove Chairman, Rosalinde Wyke, said: “Our emergency department was originally built in 1987 to handle 30,000 patients a year. The healthcare environment has changed dramatically since then with more people living longer with complex and varied illnesses and patients accessing healthcare in different ways.
“As a result we now see over 55,000 patients a year and while there has been some improvement works in the past, the facilities we had did not reflect the hospital’s ambition to provide our patients with the highest levels of care, in state-of-the-art, yet pleasant environments.
“We are working hard as a hospital to improve patient facilities and surroundings so patients receive the best care in the best possible setting. This expansion and upgrade work is another step in our journey to do just that.”
Cutting the ribbon Mr Trescothick said: “I am delighted to be able to officially open this newly extended emergency department at Musgrove Park Hospital. I know from living in the area how valued the hospital is by the community and what a fantastic job all its staff do, whether you are coming to the emergency department, or are in hospital for another reason.
“It is clear to see from having toured the department that the people of Somerset will be treated in the best possible facilities if they experience an accident or emergency.”
The work has been funded through the hospital’s Capital Projects programme (surpluses generated through savings made by staff working hard to be more efficient) as well as some funding from the former NHS Somerset Primary Care Trust.
Rosalinde said: “We are particularly grateful to the League of Friends, and indeed the Sellick family, for their very generous donation which has enabled us to provide brand new equipment for the new facilities. This equipment will make a real difference to the quality of care we give to our patients.”