Shropshire Star

Last big push for Newport's X-ray appeal after Covid means extra costs of £60,000

An extra £60,000 needs to be urgently raised to pay for extra costs incurred by Covid for Newport's new X-ray unit.

X-ray Appeal chair Dr Nick Tindall and League Of Friends of Newport Hospital chair Margaret Woodcock are delighted work has started - but a last big push is needed

The Newport League Of Friends X-Ray Appeal is asking for help with a last big fundraising push after an increase in costs due to Covid.

New ventilation and sanitation safety regulations due to Covid has increased costs for the new unit by £60,000 – just when organisers thought they had exceeded the original target.

Chairman of the Newport X-Ray Appeal, Dr Nick Tindall said: “The support from the people of Newport and our local area has been simply astonishing, we have had such commitment to getting a state of the art digital X-ray machine in the town, and we are so nearly there.”

Dr Tindall said the news of funding extra costs was frustrating but they wanted to create a unit with the best care and facilities for patients.

“Unfortunately Covid has some unforseen consequences – so much has been learnt recently about highly contagious airborne illness like Covid, and as a result new safety regulations have been brought in," he added.

"In a way this is good as it will help everyone’s safety and will future-proof the new X-ray unit, but what it does mean is we are going to have to spend much more on higher-specification ventilation and sanitation equipment, and building work, than anyone could have anticipated before Covid.

“It’s frustrating in a way because we had achieved our original £150,000 target and building work has just started, but we have to put our patients’ safety first and abide by the law, and it does mean when we get the unit it will be able to serve Newport and the villages safely and effectively for years to come.

"Newport will have a really modern and clinically effective X-ray unit operating in a national standard safe environment which will be brilliant.”

The upgraded equipment will be based at the Newport Cottage Care Centre, off Upper Bar, but will be in line with state of the art digital technology being installed at the county's bigger hospitals.

The project aims to bring more high quality care facilities into the local community.

"The new unit will bring huge benefits to patients and carers across the Newport area," Dr Tindall said.

"GPs will be able to refer patients directly to the unit, and results will come back electronically to them.

"This will save a lot of time and worry, and they will be able to use the unit in different ways so more care can be offered locally. It will particularly help the elderly, young parents and carers, as more of them will not have to get two buses or more each way to the hospitals in Telford and Shrewsbury. More care will be quicker and more local.

"But the fact remains that due to the new safety regulations we need to raise another £60,000 in order to get the new unit installed. The key partners behind the appeal – the Newport League of Friends who provide all the running costs, the two GP Practices, and Newport Rotary Lite – are doing a brilliant job doing everything they can to support the appeal, but we could really do with help from everyone in the Newport community.

"It’s a big ask when so many organisations and individuals have already helped so much, but at least we will know Newport will have a state of the art digital X-ray unit working in the safest environment for its patients – and we should have it for a long time to come.

“There will, Covid permitting, be some more fundraising events coming up, but other ideas and donations are very welcome. Please help us with this last push to get the X-ray unit that the Newport area deserves.”

If anyone can help at all, they should contact See for more details.