Work on major NNUH expansion set to begin
A major expansion of radiology and cardiology services at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) is set to begin next month.
The number of interventional radiology and cardiology procedure rooms (cath labs) will increase from four to eight as part of the construction project, which will add an extra level on to the East wing of the hospital.
The development will help meet increasing demand on services, reduce waiting times for patients and enable NNUH staff to offer new services in the future.
Work is due to start off-site in October with construction at the hospital set to begin in early 2019.
The expansion in services at NNUH will help improve clinical outcomes for patients and offers the prospect of the Trust providing a stroke thrombectomy service where blood clots are directly removed from the brain following a stroke.
Dr Frankie Swords, Chief of Division for Medicine at NNUH, said the development would also enable the Trust to carry out more coronary procedures.
“At the moment, some patients have to wait much longer than we’d like to have their pacemaker or other cardiac procedure done as we have to keep one cath lab free for emergency patients with a heart attack. Expanding the labs will make a huge difference for those patients and will also enable us to carry out some complex electrical heart procedures for patients who currently have to travel to London.”
Interventional Radiology is a minimally invasive alternative to open surgery that uses radiological image guidance to diagnose and treat a wide range of conditions.
Dr Richard Goodwin, Chief of Imaging, said: “We are really excited about this expansion of interventional radiology at the NNUH, which will reinforce our status as a major centre for the region.
“The extra space will mean that we will have our own recovery area, which means that we can admit patients and discharge them straight away from interventional radiology rather than having to wait for ward beds. This will make it easier to deliver day case work and reduce waiting times for patients.”
The Interventional Radiology Unit (IRU) will see the creation of four labs on the roof of the East wing to replace the existing rooms.
The vacated space would then be used to expand the number of cardiology labs used to treat heart conditions to four.
Mark Davies, NNUH Chief Executive, said: “I’m delighted that this major project is going ahead, which will progress at pace once the design is complete. This is wonderful news for patients and a big boost for the hospital.”