Work to start on near £10m. 'Emergency Care Village' at East Lancashire hospital

The planned development
The planned development

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust’s vision for an Emergency Care Village will start to become a reality when the £9.95m. project starts construction next week.

Adding to the hospital’s Accident and Emergency and Urgent Care facilities, the new development will see existing Acute Medical Units merge into a single facility, in addition to an enhanced, short stay Ambulatory Emergency Care Unit.

Known as ‘Phase 6’ of the Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital development, construction will start at the beginning of July and is scheduled to be completed in time for winter 2020.

Improving the hospital’s emergency facilities will mean the temporary closure of one car park next to A&E from Monday July 1st. Hospital visitors and staff are advised to use one of the hospital’s other car parks, including the recently opened 500-space car park located on Old Bank Lane.

“Less than three months after announcing the exciting Emergency Care Village project and, thanks to the hard work of Trust staff and our partners, we’re starting construction work,” ELHT divisional general manager for Estates and Facilities James Maguire said.

“A major construction project at a very busy hospital like the Royal Blackburn will require temporary changes but we’ll do our very best to keep any disruption to an absolute minimum.”

Phase 6 will provide 31 patient beds plus a number of further improvements, including a higher support bedded area, staff teaching facilities and a dedicated inpatient pharmacy service Medical staff will benefit from faster, improved access to emergency patients.

Hospital bosses envisage the new Emergency Care Village will lead to reduced length of stay in A&E, fewer unnecessary transfers of care and local emergency services are ‘future proofed’ as people live longer.

Acting chief executive of the Trust, Professor Damian Riley, said: “Starting the construction of emergency care facilities at the Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital is fantastic news for patients, staff and everyone in East Lancashire.

“As people live longer and emergency care becomes more complex, it’s better for patients that our Emergency Care Village brings facilities and staff together in one location and meets the needs for the future of the NHS.”