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Highland Life / News / NHS Highland / IMPROVEMENTS TO SERVICE FOR SURGICAL PATIENTS AT BELFORD HOSPITAL

IMPROVEMENTS TO SERVICE FOR SURGICAL PATIENTS AT BELFORD HOSPITAL

Issued: 16 Jul 2010

The service currently provided to remote and rural surgical patients at the Belford Hospital in Fort William is being improved to make it more accessible and more flexible.

A new Pre-Operative Assessment Service, which will be fully functional in mid-August, will offer patients greater choice to be treated on a day case basis with minimum disruption to their lives.

It will also mean operations are less likely to be cancelled and patients should recover more quickly.

Marie Law, who is Clinical Services Manager at the Belford, said: “The Pre-Operative Assessment Service aims to improve the overall experience for patients undertaking planned surgical procedures by inviting them to participate in the planning of their care.

“It is hoped that, by negotiating agreed admission dates and minimising the need to be in hospital, the overall experience will be improved and the patient will feel respected and central to the process.”

She added that the new initiative should enable local people, who have busy family and work commitments, to receive their treatment promptly and at a time that is most suitable to their circumstances.

Ms Law said: “It is our aim to improve access for patients and engage them in our planning as soon as possible. This will not only deliver a tailored service for each individual patient, but optimise our resources for the benefit of all.”

She added that she was very grateful to the ladies of the Belford T-Bar, whose generous contribution had supported the realisation of this service.

At the same time, a ‘Travel Scheme’ pilot is being introduced for patients who live more than an hour from Fort William .

These patients will be given the option of staying in B&B accommodation the night before their operation, rather than being admitted to the hospital.

This will be better for the patient as they will be staying in a more relaxing environment. It is also more cost effective than having a patient in hospital overnight when it is not necessary.

Ms Law said: “This scheme will improve the access to the service and reduce the need for admission to the hospital any earlier than required.”

© 2010 Highland Public Services Partnership.
Project part-financed by the European Union (European Regional Development Fund) within the INTERREG IIIB Northern Periphery Programme