5th August 2015.
Major Makeover for Hospital Unit Unveiled
Opportunity to visit and view.
St. Mary’s Hospital is getting ready to unveil its brand new extended Medical Assessment Unit (MAU), which will vastly improve the environment in which patients are cared for whilst their condition is being assessed. Members of the public have a chance to see the unit before it opens to patients later this month.
The hospital is opening its doors to the public on Saturday 15th August between 10:00am to 13:00pm for anyone wishing to have a look around the impressive new facility whilst it is still empty, ahead of being used to care for patients.
Patients will arrive in the Medical Assessment Unit for further tests and treatment, having come from either the Emergency Department or their GP for an urgent medical problem. They may also be surgical day case patients. After being assessed, patients may be allowed home, transferred to another specialist centre, or admitted onto a ward at St Mary’s Hospital so treatment can be continued. Most will spend a night in the unit.
The new unit will be open seven days a week, 24 hours a day and is staffed by a team of senior medical and nursing staff dedicated to providing the highest quality patient care. It has 24 patient beds and, unlike the former unit, has an area devoted to assessing patients who may not need an overnight stay in hospital, but can be allowed home after diagnostic tests and simple treatment. Known as an ambulatory care area, it can see up to six walk-in patients at a time, with the aim of improving the time it takes to see all patients and make it less noisy and disruptive for patients already on the ward.
Another benefit of the new unit is that all emergency patients can now be seen more easily in one place by a number of staff from different professional backgrounds who have different areas of expertise, known as a multi-disciplinary team. They work together to give the best treatment and care possible, and this is a key part of making sure patients are treated in the most appropriate setting and that waiting times for tests and treatment are kept to a minimum.
Commenting on the new unit, Jessy Gulati, Medical Assessment Unit Sister, said: “We are all very excited about the opportunity provided by the new Medical Assessment Unit, to both staff and patients. The bright, new unit looks fantastic and will give us a chance to showcase our passion to constantly innovate and improve the delivery of patient care. At the core of the Trust ‘s principles is the desire to provide quality patient care to everyone, every time and the new unit will help provide a major improvement in service delivery by giving our already excellent nurses the right tools and environment to work in.”
The Medical Assessment Unit relocated to Appley Ward last August and work started to completely reconfigure and fully refurbish the existing accommodation, as well as expand the space by building two extensions. Robert Graham, Capital Planning and Development Manager, is pleased with the outcome: “The former unit which was often described as ‘rather tired looking’ has been completely transformed and we now have a unit which is bright, modern and spacious creating a much nicer environment for patients, visitors and for staff. The layout has been carefully designed to make best use of the space available. Ward accommodation has been created to afford more privacy to patients and reduce noise. A dedicated ambulatory care area is located at the entrance to the unit to help minimise disruption to existing patients. Overall, it is a fantastic facility that has been designed with the needs of patients and staff at the very forefront.”
At the heart of the unit, a central hub curves around for better observation of patients in order to maximise patient safety. It also helps create a focal point for all aspects of MAU’s diverse team to come together so that continuity of care can be ensured and the exchange of information will become a much slicker and efficient process.
The overall design of the unit has incorporated feedback from the Trust Feedback schemes including the ‘Friends and Family Test’ which collects patient comments about their stay in hospital and ‘Listening into Action’ which enables staff to make practical, positive changes to improve patient care. A common theme was a desire to minimise noise and disruption to existing patients on the ward during the admission process, as well as improve communication between different medical teams to ensure continuity of care and patient safety.
Commenting on the reopening of beds, Chief Operating Officer Shaun Stacey said: “We would usually have beds closed over the summer but we have been through some difficult times recently whilst supporting the new development to be completed. With the arrival of some additional nurses from the Philippines over the summer we anticipate being able to open more beds during the autumn. It is likely that the Island’s hospital position will remain challenging as we continue to meet the needs of our local population and an ever increasing range of conditions from which they require longer to recover from. The new MAU will help us better manage patients but we are also working with partners in the My Life a Full Life programme to develop a range of new models of care where many services are provided in localities and/or patient’s own homes.”
The new Medical Assessment Unit is located on Level A (Ground Floor), St. Mary’s Hospital.