Doncaster Royal Infirmary set to transform emergency department with £17m improvement scheme

Doncaster Royal InfirmaryDoncaster Royal Infirmary
Doncaster Royal Infirmary
Doncaster Royal Infirmary is set to see wholesale changes to its emergency department after nearly £16million was confirmed for improvements.

The Government confirmed the cash in its autumn budget - and now health bosses in the borough are looking to draw up detailed plans for how they hope to carry out the work.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, presented the Autumn budget to parliament and confirmed he would make available £15.7m for the Doncaster Urgent and Emergency Care scheme to expand, redesign and improve emergency care.

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The Government said it had, 'exceptionally' - that is outside of the usual budget allocations - increased the Department of Health’s budget by £2.8 billion over the next year, with the Treasury committed to funding £3.5 billion of capital between 2017/18 and 2022/23 - largely to support transformation schemes.

In terms of next steps; business cases for the scheme will be developed and need to be approved before the funding is released.

David Purdue, chief operating officer at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals, said: “This is a very exciting development for the Trust, with the potential to vastly improve the experience of our patients who come to the Emergency Department at Doncaster Royal Infirmary for urgent care and treatment.

“While finer details still have to be worked through before any work can commence, the transformation to the existing department will be wide-ranging in how it looks and feels for patients, greatly improving the privacy and dignity patients experience when arriving via ambulance, increasing the space within the department and enhancing our facilities and functions such as resuscitation.

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“As a key partner of the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Accountable Care System (ACS), this funding will help to improve our emergency services to fit both local and regional need, improving patient care and ultimately providing a first rate service for the people of Doncaster, Bassetlaw and beyond.”

Borough GP Dr David Crichton, chairman of the Doncaster NHS Clinical Commission Group, welcomed the news.

He said: "This is great news. It will give us an opportunity to drive forwards our plans for improving A&E and out of hours care for Doncaster patients."

He said there were ideas for how it could be moved forwards, but they still had to be developed and fined tuned.

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It is expected the scheme would involve re-developing the A&E department at Doncaster Royal Infirmary.

The announcement of the cash follows confirmation that Doncaster Royal Infirmary is to be one of three regional specialist sites for urgent treatment of strokes. A decision to change the way people receive care in the first few days after having a stroke in South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw was made this month, and follows a move to make Doncaster a major regional centre for out-of-hours child surgery involving anesthetics.

Accident and emergency departments have been under scrutiny nationally as targets have been missed for the number of patients seen within the four hour target waiting period.

In August, Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals achieved 93.6 per cent of patients seen withing four hours at its A&E department against the 95 per cent target, which put it within the top third.