“It’s absolutely superb!”
Grandfather Stephen Nicholls was the first patient to transfer from Walsall’s old Acute Medical Unit (AMU) into its new home this morning. And he was full of praise for the first-class facilities in Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust’s new Urgent and Emergency Care Centre.
Teams from the Emergency Department (ED) were the first to move into the new £c40m centre overnight last Wednesday 1 March, into the following day Thursday 2 March.
AMU’s move is taking place throughout today with patient safety the priority.
Stephen, who used to work in the steel industry, said staff explained to him last night that he would be moving into the new centre.
“Now I’m here I would say it’s absolutely superb,” he said.
“It’s quite a thing to be the first as well.”
He was joined by former toolmaker William Gibson, 69.
William said: “It’s quite exciting to be the first here.
“It could feel quite stifling in the old unit – here it seems much more airy. There’s a big difference between the two.”
Staff are equally as impressed.
Rani Virk, Divisional Director of Nursing, Division of Medicine & Long Term Conditions, said: “We are thrilled to finally be moving into our new unit and there’s a great feeling of optimism today.”
The multi-million-pound facility includes an Urgent Treatment Centre, Emergency Department including Resus and Rapid Assessment and Treatment area, and Children’s ED, co-located Paediatric Assessment Unit, Acute Medical Unit and provision for Frailty and Community Integrated Assessment services.
It also includes re-configuration of the current Emergency Department footprint, to incorporate improved Ambulatory Emergency Care and Imaging services.
Various specialist facilities are located throughout, such as an isolation room for infectious patients, bariatric provision and digital X-ray rooms. All areas have been designed specifically to enhance clinical staff efficiency, improve quality of care, improve patient experience, and improve the working environment for staff.