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In the ICU

Visitors to St. Peter’s may well notice some construction work taking place around the hospital.

Director of Estates and Facilities Chris Bell explains: “Each year we plan our capital projects - those areas of our hospitals that most urgently need to be updated or improved. At St. Peter’s, we’ve needed to create space to expand and relocate some of our clinical services for some time, so it’s exciting this work is now underway.

One such project has been in our A&E department, where the space created by closing and relocating the Multi-Faith Centre to a new facility in the Duchess of Kent Wing has been used to build a second Clinical Decisions Unit (CDU).

Lead Nurse for A&E, Helen Lawrence explains: “With increasing demand on our A&E services, we have struggled for space, within the department, in recent years. Creating a second CDU has been a major improvement and helped us to better manage patient flow, by providing five extra beds for patients who don’t need to be admitted to an acute medical or surgical bed, but do need to stay with us a little longer, perhaps overnight, for tests or monitoring.

Additionally it’s enabled us to dedicate one CDU to male patients and one to female patients, providing a better standard of privacy and dignity with single sex accommodation.” Over in our A&E car park, visitors may have spotted some construction vehicles and also scaffolding around the upper floor… These are the works taking place in our Intensive Care Unit, to enable our critical care beds to come together and provide care to all seriously ill patients in one place.

Administrative staff are moving out of the areas next to the nine-bed Intensive Care Unit and the four-bed High Dependency Unit will be moving from its current location next to Aspen Ward into the vacated space.

Bringing all critical care beds together in one unit means that nursing staff will have more colleagues immediately available to call on in the event of an incident, improving patient safety and making a better use of resources.