New £3.3m ward set to ease pressure on Princess Alexandra Hospital
A new £3.3m general surgery ward has been officially opened at the general hospital for Bishop’s Stortford.
To meet growing patient demand, the Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust built upwards on its cramped site at Hamstel Road in Harlow.
The trust, which cares for a core population of about 350,000 patients centred on the new town, Bishop’s Stortford and Epping, also operates outpatient and diagnostic services from the Herts and Essex Community Hospital in Bishop’s Stortford, St Margaret’s Hospital in Epping and the Cheshunt Community Hospital.
Charnley ward, with 27 beds, was constructed by Portakabin 25ft above the ground in just three months. It is designed to expand capacity, ease pressure on the emergency department and improve patient flow.
It has been built next to operating theatres, providing a smooth transition for patients to a ward bed following surgery.
Charnley’s manager Sarah Steel said: “As a dedicated surgical ward, it colocates patients next to operating theatres and makes a smoother patient journey.”
The ward was named by the hospital’s Patient Panel after Sir John Charnley, a British orthopaedic surgeon who pioneered the first hip replacement operation.
Harlow MP Robert Halfon, who opened the facility, said: “It's so wonderful to be here to open an incredible new ward which has all been thanks to the non-stop work of the staff here, who battle against the odds and rise to the challenges they face and yet have made this hospital such a special place.
"I’m really pleased PAHT got the capital funding from Government to do this and also that the hospital received £9 million for A&E.
“My task is to get a new hospital for Harlow, but in the meantime we’re making sure with this new ward that, as they always do, patients get a service that is second to none.”