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Clinical Treatment Suite opens in the Nightingale Building

A new Clinical Treatment Suite based in the Nightingale Building at Halton Hospital has opened which will help to reduce waiting lists for those suffering with chronic back pain.

A capital investment of £145k, has provided a facility which will allow patients to be seen and treated without requiring admitting to a ward or visiting an operating theatre to have their procedure, helping to reduce waiting lists. This development is part of ongoing plans to further improve the chronic pain service and to reduce waiting times.

The plan is to treat up to 14 patients a day, Monday to Friday for chronic back pain; minor vascular procedures for symptomatic varicose veins and minor urology procedures will also be performed in the facility. These will be performed under local anaesthetic with the ability to provide sedation where required. Patients who do require additional care following their procedures can be referred to the surgical ward, located on the main corridor from the treatment room, but the majority will go home within hours of their procedure direct from the Clinical Treatment Room.

The design of the facility is a walk in/walk out approach to provide efficiency and allowing more patients to be treated. The focus for the Clinical Treatment Suite is to treat patients who are experiencing chronic back pain and to improve their quality of life.

Louise Hughes from Runcorn was the first patient to receive her treatment in the new facility and commented,

“I was very impressed with the new Clinical Treatment Suite, the fact it was all within one area provided privacy and dignity, as previously you booked into the ward, but then had to be transported to Theatres and back. “I particularly liked the locker facilities, which allowed me to bring my tablet/phone to look at pre-procedure and then after. I was delighted to be able to go home within hours of my procedure.

“Having this facility will make a huge difference to those like me suffering from chronic pain, who have had to wait three years for treatment because of the delays caused by the pandemic and I am feeling a lot better after having my radio frequency treatment last week, it has improved my daily life.”

Guy Hanson, service manager for Theatres explained,

“The Clinical Treatment Room will provide us with more flexibility for treating more patients and releasing valuable capacity in our operating theatres to allow more surgery to take place on the Halton site. Previously, patients requiring pain injections would book into a bed space on the main ward and be taken to Theatres to have their injection, reducing surgery slots.

“Now with this new facility it will enhance our patients’ experience, as they will book in, be shown to the changing room to get changed into a gown, then seated in our comfortable bays, whilst they await their turn for their procedure in our treatment suite. Once they have had their procedure, they will be cared for in our 2 bedded recovery area, before returning to the chair bays to be monitored and provided with refreshments if required, before being discharged.”

The facility will also be used in partnership with The Walton Centre for chronic pain procedures and Countess of Chester Hospital for vascular treatment.

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Pictured: Bev Caine, ward manager with patient Louise Hughes and Rosie McCann, Theatres Manager in the Clinical Treatment Suite.