Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser

Hip, hip hooray as new hospital will be orthopaedi­cs centre


The new Monklands Hospital will become the location for Lanarkshir­e’s elective orthopaedi­cs service when it opens in around seven years’ time – relocating the specialism from its current base at Hairmyres.

NHS Lanarkshir­e board members approved the preferred option to concentrat­e all planned surgery such as hip, shoulder and knee replacemen­ts at the new facility, to be based at Wester Moffat in Airdrie.

Officials have stressed that the decision does not impact on the area’s existing orthopaedi­c trauma care, located at Wishaw General, and that all three of the area’s acute hospitals will continue to provide outpatient care.

The decision follows a two-month public consultati­on, and will mean that theatre and ward facilities are purposebui­lt at the new Monklands, including single rooms for post-operative patients and reducing the length of their hospital stays.

It will also give NHS Lanarkshir­e increased capacity for the growing requiremen­t for orthopaedi­c surgery, with many patients currently being asked to travel to the Golden Jubilee national centre or to independen­t facilities for their operations.

Health officials say that the move will also allow its orthopaedi­c team to grow by eliminatin­g the need for additional support from the independen­t sector, and that there is “broad clinical support” from medics.

They add that there is no capacity for expansion of the service at Hairmyres, whereas demand for elective surgery will increase as the local population ages.

Medical director Dr Jane Burns said: “Most of our current elective surgery takes place at University Hospital Hairmyres. Additional capacity is provided by the Golden Jubilee and independen­t hospitals, with shoulder and upper body surgery carried out University Hospital Wishaw.

“We’ll have the opportunit­y to improve other services at Hairmyres by using the vacated ward, theatre and clinics – this could include bringing other independen­t sector surgery back to Lanarkshir­e and the continued developmen­t of the new vascular surgery service.

“The exact nature of this will be determined through the developmen­t of our new healthcare strategy, Our Health Together, through 2022.”

Almost 400 people completed a survey giving their views on the move – and NHS Lanarkshir­e have said that travel and transport will be addressed as key themes which were raised during the consultati­on.

The new orthopaedi­c facilities will now be included in designs for the new Airdrie hospital, with the next stage of the developmen­t being submission of an outline business case to the Scottish Government for approval during 2022.

NHS Lanarkshir­e board chair Neena Mahal said: “I would like to thank all those who took part in the engagement process, including the public, orthopaedi­c patients and their families, staff from NHS Lanarkshir­e and health & social care partnershi­ps, elected representa­tives and other members of the community.

“All of their valuable feedback, which included nearly 400 responses to a survey, was detailed in an engagement report to inform the board’s decisionma­king, alongside other informatio­n such as an integrated equality and inequality impact assessment and a carbon impact analysis.”

Colin Lauder, the health board’s director of planning, property and performanc­e, added: “While a journey to hospital for elective orthopaedi­c surgery should be a one-off experience for the majority of patients, we recognise from the feedback that travel and transport is a key issue.

“Public transport infrastruc­ture is at the heart of the Monklands replacemen­t project, to ensure necessary improvemen­ts are made for the benefit of communitie­s across Lanarkshir­e; and the planned East Airdrie link road will provide enhanced access to Wester Moffat.

“An outline business case for the new hospital is being developed and is expected to be submitted for approval to the Scottish Government in 2022, and this decision allows us to include the requiremen­ts for building and staffing the operating theatres, wards and other facilities needed for an orthopaedi­c unit.”

 ?? ?? On the move The new Monklands Hospital will open in around seven years’ time
On the move The new Monklands Hospital will open in around seven years’ time

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