Hospitals across mid and south Essex are receiving a welcome £110 million boost to help improve facilities.
The long-awaited funding from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has now been confirmed and will support Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust, and its hospitals in Southend, Basildon and Broomfield, to help make the hospitals fit for the future.
The funding will support the Trust to increase the number of beds, improve capacity in all three emergency departments, improve cancer and planned care by upgrading and expanding surgical theatres.
Matthew Hopkins, Chief Executive at the Trust, said:
“This funding is great news for our patients and staff. Patients will get better quality care and it helps us meet the ever-increasing demands on hospital services.
“Finally, the hard work can begin to improve the patient experience of everyone who uses our hospitals.”
The Trust will get an initial £40 million between now and March 2025, helping it to carry out critical preparation works and complete some elements of the building works, with the rest of the money set to be delivered in 2025.
This funding follows the earlier announcement of £8million in January this year to allow the Trust to improve and expand the first phase of its emergency department improvements at Southend Hospital, which is set to be complete in winter 2024/25.
It is expected other improvements will be delivered throughout 2024 and into 2025.
The funding was supported by local MPs across Mid and South Essex and the Mid and South Essex Integrated Care Board, who campaigned to get this money agreed. They have welcomed the news.
Anthony McKeever, Chief Executive of the Mid and South Essex Integrated Care Board, said:
“We welcome this announcement and look forward to working together to optimise the benefits of this funding for our patients, residents and our workforce across mid and south Essex.”
Anna Firth, MP for Southend West, said:
"Since being elected, I have fought tooth and nail to deliver this funding and I am delighted that the £110 million of investment to improve mid and south Essex hospitals is finally on its way.
“Delivering this investment, on top of the £8 million we secured last year for Southend Hospital, has been one of my key priorities. The money will see Southend Hospital benefit from a modern endoscopy suite, an upgraded and refurbished main theatre suite more beds and an upgraded and expanded emergency department.
“I know that work has already begun on improvements to the A&E, which will support the Trust to meet demand this winter.”
Vicky Ford, MP for Chelmsford, said:
“This funding will deliver more capacity for the vital A&E service and better configured wards at Broomfield Hospital. This will benefit patients from across Chelmsford and mid Essex. I will continue to press for the improvements to be delivered as soon as possible.”
Sir James Duddridge KCMG, MP for Rochford and Southend East, said:
“This is fantastic news not just for residents of Southend, but across Mid and South Essex and will support improvements to care and capacity at our local hospitals.”
Mark Francois, MP for Rayleigh and Wickford, said:
“I am so very pleased that this funding has come through, which will help the Trust to deliver much needed change and expansion. I hope this will mean patients will be able to access care faster and in better surroundings.”
Kemi Badenoch, MP for Saffron Walden, said:
“I am pleased we will be seeing this vital investment in Broomfield and south Essex hospitals.
“It will not only enable the modernisation of the emergency department and capacity at Broomfield Hospital but prioritise the important infrastructure work required to help improve patient care.
“I have been supporting the Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust to make the case for this investment and will continue to work with the team at Broomfield as these works progress. I look forward to seeing the improvements.”