Major modernisation and expansion of Southend Hospital Emergency Department
The Emergency Department at Southend Hospital is being expanded and modernised as part of an ambitious £8 million scheme. The cash injection will see the department redesigned to meet the needs of residents now and in the future.
Acting Chief Executive Hannah Coffey said: “I am absolutely delighted that we have been given this funding. It allows us to re-model our emergency department, providing a bigger and better unit that works for our community.”
An enormous amount of work has taken place at Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust in recent months to reduce waiting times and provide patients with the urgent and emergency care that they need. An ambulance handover unit has been opened at the hospital, seven additional cubicles created in the majors unit and new ways of working introduced which have significantly improved ambulance handover times and waits for initial assessment.
Work will start immediately to design the new department.
The scheme will ensure there is enough space in the majors treatment areas, waiting room and resuscitation areas; this will improve the flow of patients through the hospital to reduce delays and allow ambulances to handover as quickly as possible.
The Department of Health and Social Care agreed to fund the scheme in recognition of the capacity constraints on the Southend Hospital site which has made caring for an increasing and ageing population more difficult in recent years.
It is expected that the work will be complete by March 2024, with some of the new facilities ready for next winter.
Support for the expansion plans have come from the Integrated Care Board for the local NHS, community organisations and the City Council, as well as the four local MPs in South East Essex.
Anna Firth, MP for Southend West, said: “I am delighted that this multi-million-pound investment is finally arriving. It is a complete game changer as we are given the opportunity to remodel the A&E to be fit for the future. It should go a long way to improve patient experience and tackle waiting times. I want to thank all of the hospital and ambulance staff who work so hard, every day, to help people across Southend and beyond.”
Sir James Duddridge KCMG, MP for Southend East and Rochford, said: “I am pleased that Southend Hospital is finally received the funding to modernise the Emergency Department. This multi-million-pound investment will unlock the opportunity to redesign our Accident and Emergency to work for staff and patients, all while helping to deliver further improvements to patient outcomes by ensuring that it is ready for the future.”
Mark Francois MP for Rayleigh and Wickford said: "Alongside my neighbouring colleagues, we all have been lobbying hard for this money for some time, so I am delighted that this funding has now been secured to expand capacity at Southend's A&E department and thus ease the pressures on the hospital and the ambulance services as well."
Rebecca Harris, MP for Castle Point, said: “I am really pleased this much needed funding has been delivered, as hospital delays have been a growing concern for Castle Point residents.”