Thousands of people needing emergency treatment and care in Somerset and Dorset will benefit from a £1.1million extension to Yeovil Hospital’s emergency department (A&E) this year.

The new emergency department development will increase the capacity of the department and add new bays in which patients are assessed and treated. It will also see a new space created to care for children with mental health issues.

Demand on Yeovil’s emergency department has risen sharply in recent years – and continues to rise. In the last three years there’s been a 28% increase in the number of patients attending the department. Today, the team regularly see nearly 200 patients a day.

“We have a very high performing emergency department here in Yeovil Hospital,” said Chief Executive, Jonathan Higman. “But maintaining our performance in key areas like waiting times and ambulance handovers, which make a big difference to patients, has become increasingly difficult as demand continues to increase.

“This funding will allow us to expand the size of the department, with more bays to accommodate patients who need to be assessed and treated.

“I’m also very pleased that we can now create a bespoke, dedicated assessment room, within the department, where our team can work with children who present with an emotional or mental health concern.

“An emergency department can be a worrying place to visit for a child, with lots of noise and activity. This new, quiet space will allow our specialist staff to work with these children, so we can better assess and support them at what can be a very difficult time.”

Consultant and Clinical Director of the emergency department, Dr Jon Tipping, said: “This is a welcome boost for the team who have been working exceptionally hard this year.

“Additional space will make it easier for us to accommodate, diagnose and treat the thousands of patients who rely upon us each month. Ultimately, this will give our team the environment to match the quality of the care they provide.”

Although the exact timetable for the work is yet to be agreed, work is expected to begin in early 2020. A further £100k will also allow the Trust to create a new, larger space for its Integrated Discharge Team, enabling them to support patients’ return home more effectively.


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