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North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust - 70 years of the NHS


Home > News > Surgical pre-admissions unit in Carlisle makes a move to improve patient care

Surgical pre-admissions unit in Carlisle makes a move to improve patient care

Posted on Thursday 25th October 2018

The Surgical Pre-admissions (SPA) unit at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle has been working on a series of improvements for patients before it moved to its new location last week.

The unit has relocated to the first floor of the hospital on the surgical floor, where Aspen ward was located. It was previously located on the ground floor and the move will mean all of the hospital’s surgical services are located together on one level, with the exception of day surgery which remains on the ground floor. 

The new location is much more convenient for patients and offers more privacy as it is much closer to the hospital’s theatres and they have far less distance to travel between their pre-assessment and their operation.  

Before their move, the team focused on what improvements they could make by taking part in a Rapid Process Improvement Workshop (RPIW), supported by the Cumbria Learning and Improvement Collaborative (CLIC). 

The workshop provided a very intensive five-day improvement plan and an opportunity for staff working in the department to take time out to discuss the main obstacles they face within their day-to-day roles. 

They also looked at how they could reduce the number of journeys around the ward a patient would need to take before surgery, making it a much more relaxing experience for patients and creating efficiencies for the ward staff. The time also allowed the staff on the ward to run through the new layout before patients came onto the ward.  

Claire Penn, matron for surgery at North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “The new location is fantastic for our patients and we’re all very happy to be on the same level as the theatre teams. 

“The RPIW was a great opportunity to take time away out, step back and look at what improvements we can make for our patients. 

“The energy and enthusiasm of all of the staff involved was wonderful to see and everyone worked as one team to identify what changes needed to be made and what they could do to make sure these improvements happen. 

“It was also great to really hit the ground running before we had any patients, to make sure any teething problems were worked out before they occurred.”