A public consultation on proposals to spend £450 million transforming acute hospital and maternity services in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland has begun today (28.9.2020)
The Building Better Hospitals for the Future proposals are set to deliver a number of significant changes in improving patient care, achieving better patient outcomes, and getting staff all working in the best place to make this happen.
The public consultation, which runs from today until 21 December 2020, concerns the services delivered at the three main hospitals in Leicester, run by University Hospitals of Leicester (UHL) NHS Trust, as well as services delivered at the midwifery-led unit at St Mary’s Hospital, Melton Mowbray.
The proposals would provide 139 more hospital beds and change acute and maternity services by moving all acute care to the Leicester Royal Infirmary (in the city centre) and to Glenfield Hospital (on the outskirts of Leicester on Groby Road). Acute care includes patients receiving treatment for severe injury or illness, urgent medical conditions, or during recovery from surgery.
Among the new developments, this huge investment would see the creation of a major planned care treatment centre at the Glenfield Hospital. This would separate planned operations and emergency procedures and help stop urgent pressures leading to the cancellation of routine surgery.
The treatment centre, along with the delivery of more outpatient appointments virtually or closer to where patients live in the community, would reduce the number of patients attending the Leicester Royal Infirmary site by more than half a million per year – reducing city centre traffic and creating space for other exciting developments.
These proposed developments would see the creation of the first dedicated single-site children’s hospital in the East Midlands, based in the Kensington Building. It would also see a new maternity hospital developed on the site.
Meanwhile, two ‘super’ intensive care units with 100 beds in total (almost double the current number) would be developed at the Leicester Royal Infirmary and Glenfield Hospital. The investment would also see the creation of welcome centres to help people find their way around the hospital sites, modernised wards, operating theatres and imaging facilities, and additional car parking.
It is proposed that a new community health campus with non-acute services would be created on the site of Leicester General Hospital, in Evington (east of Leicester city centre on Gwendolen Road). The proposals include in-patient beds for patients recovering from a stroke, new GP direct access imaging facilities such as x-rays and scans to help diagnose patients’ conditions quicker, and the retention of the existing diabetes centre of excellence.
The proposals may also see a new primary care urgent treatment centre, observation facilities, community outpatient facilities for a range of mental and physical conditions, and additional primary care services.
In addition, the proposals include potentially relocating the midwifery-led unit at St Mary’s Hospital, Melton Mowbray to the Leicester General Hospital campus – ensuring that the service is accessible to many more women living across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland, while also enabling them to be closer to specialist medical support should they need it. The existing unit is under-used, with less than three births per week, despite efforts to promote it.
The consultation will also consider greater use of hydrotherapy pools in the community, replacing use of the hydrotherapy pool at Leicester General Hospital.
The consultation is being run by the three NHS clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland – Leicester City CCG, West Leicestershire CCG, and East Leicestershire and Rutland CCG.
There are a number of ways in which people can find out more and have their say, including a number of online events. The full consultation document and questionnaire survey are available on the website: www.betterhospitalsleicester.nhs.uk