Media Release: Health Minister officially opens Short Stay Elective Surgical Centre at St John’s Hospital

HEALTH Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has officially opened the Short Stay Elective Surgical Centre at St John’s Hospital.

The £8.2m Short Stay Elective Surgical Centre is now treating patients from across Lothian for day case surgery.

It has been created within the existing hospital and replaces wards five, six and seven.

The wards have been merged to provide the specially designed facility, which aims to improve patient care and boost hospital efficiency.

It provides a range of treatments, including tonsillectomies, gall bladder operations, nasal surgery, hand surgery and hernia repairs to patients from across Lothian.

Although most patients are discharged home on the same day as their surgery, an overnight stay facility is available if longer care is required.

Didi Welsh, project manager, said: “Officially opening the new Short Stay Elective Surgical Centre is the culmination of many years hard work and I am delighted to see it open and offering treatment for patients.

“Creating the new purpose-built facility has allowed us to centralise most of our day surgery specialties in one location, and to offer more specialised treatment to patients who are undergoing minor surgical procedures.

“This means patients from across Lothian are able to benefit from the new state-of-the-art facility.”

As part of the overall project, the endoscopy unit, the flagship decontamination unit and the observation ward were all created to ensure St John’s continues to provide modern, safe, swift and effective healthcare.

Wards were refurbished, created and relocated and custom-built new office blocks were also built in the former residency.

Once fully operational, the unit is expected to treat around 3,000 patients a year.

Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing, Nicola Sturgeon, said:

“The Scottish Government is committed to protecting spending on health and to ensuring that boards have the necessary resources to bring about real benefits to both patients and staff.

“I know how strongly people feel about retaining services at St John’s. That is why in 2008 I gave my personal commitment to the future of the hospital as an acute, emergency hospital and an integral part of NHS Lothian.

“This new centre for day surgery underlines that commitment, safeguards St John’s for the future and highlights the importance of continuing to improve facilities in the NHS.

“I’m delighted to be here to open this impressive centre, treating people from across Lothian it will allow even more patients to come to the hospital to be prepared for surgery or undergo day case operations and help to improve the patient experience by providing care in a modern, safe, swift and effective way.”


Issued: 01.03.2011

Aileen MacArthur
Acting Communications Manager
0131 465 5646

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