Children and young people and their families are benefiting from new facilities opened thanks to national funding to help prepare for winter and improve the Emergency Department for Covid-19.
Royal Stoke University Hospital was awarded more than £4.2 million from a pot of Government money to help reduce overcrowding and limit the risk from further outbreaks of coronavirus ahead of winter pressures.
The £4.3 million has been used to increase the waiting area space and develop additional bays in the Children’s Emergency Department at Royal Stoke to ensure adequate social distancing and redevelop the new Children’s Assessment Unit and Children’s Outpatients area.
The CAU moved into its new home in the former Children’s Outpatients department before the end of last year and the new Outpatient’s department has been opened in a Portacabin outside the Staffordshire Children’s Hospital entrance.
Paul Bytheway, UHNM Chief Operating Officer, said:
“Due to the increasing number of Coronavirus cases at the start of the pandemic we took a range of measures to ensure that both our hospitals, staff and patients remained safe.
“This included re-organising our Emergency Departments at both Stoke and County Hospital in Stafford to keep patients safe. The changes at Royal Stoke saw our Children’s Assessment Unit being used for red resus and as a result a new location was needed elsewhere on site.
“Funding has ensured the positive steps taken already have been further developed as part of our winter plans to re-provide a dedicated children’s A&E waiting area and assessment unit.”
Janet Hagan, Children’s Services Matron, said:
“Staff from all departments have worked immensely hard to ensure everything is in place in time for winter and we are thrilled the outpatients area, CAU and ED waiting areas are providing a safe and secure environment for children and families who do need to attend for a face-to-face outpatient appointment or for an emergency.”