Patients can be in and out in a day as new unit opens at Blackpool Vic

It is hoped a new unit which has opened at Blackpool Victoria Hospital will help slash waiting times for patients by reducing the need to stay overnight on a ward.
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The Same Day Emergency Care unit is aimed at ensuring people are assessed, diagnosed and treated more quickly and sent home the same day if possible.

Health chiefs hope the new service will reduce waiting times and hospital visits at a time when the NHS is under huge pressure from backlogs caused by the Covid pandemic.

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New critical care unit opens at Blackpool Victoria Hospital
SDEC lead consultants and project management teamSDEC lead consultants and project management team
SDEC lead consultants and project management team

A major report this summer revealed there were nearly 25,000 patients on the waiting list at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals (BTH) in March, up by 6,000 compared to the previous year.

The annual report of the Blackpool Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) for 2021/22 also showed nearly 5,000 patients waited more than 12 hours in A&E before a decision was made to admit them in 2021/22 compared to 294 in 2020/21.

Blackpool A&E consultant Dr Adeline Israel, who is also clinical lead on the Emergency Village, said: “At a time when the NHS and emergency care in particular is facing pressures, the same day emergency care model can help patient flow and assist with capacity."

She added the unit would "significantly improve patient pathways at the trust, as those most appropriate for care can be seen right away, assessed, diagnosed, treated and then sent home the same day.

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It is hoped the unit will help cut waiting times at Blackpool Victoria HospitalIt is hoped the unit will help cut waiting times at Blackpool Victoria Hospital
It is hoped the unit will help cut waiting times at Blackpool Victoria Hospital

"The multi-disciplinary approach to same day emergency care is exciting as a project as it will create an environment of camaraderie and cross-learning from the different specialities around the trust."

The new unit completes the second phase of the trust’s new Emergency Village, following the Critical Care move to the building in early August. with the whole project costing £25m including £13m of investment by NHS England and Improvement.

In addition to medical and surgical treatments, patients can also be referred to the unit for specialisms which currently include gynaecology, urology, orthopaedics and ear, nose and throat.

Trish Armstrong-Child, chief executive at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals, said: “This is a key milestone for the work that we have been doing to improve our urgent care facilities.

"It is important that we recognise all the hard work and dedication undertaken by all our teams that have made this possible.”