Shropshire hospitals hoping to build modular wards in bid to restore services
A funding bid has been made to NHS bosses to erect modular buildings at Shropshire’s major hospitals to be used as extra ward and theatre space.
The move is aimed at allowing services affected by the coronavirus outbreak to be restored, health commissioners say.
News of the bid to NHS England and NHS Improvement is revealed in a report to Shropshire’s Clinical Commissioning Group’s governing body, which meets today, while it also says that the county’s trauma service could return to Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in September if there is enough capacity.
The trauma service has been temporarily relocated to the county’s orthopaedic hospital, near Oswestry.
Modular buildings are made from prefabricated units made off site that can be erected quickly on site.
Talking about the bid ahead of the meeting, David Evans, joint accountable officer for Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin CCGs, said: “One of the challenges around restoring services is a reduction in productivity because of the need to change personal protective equipment between every case, in particular around things like theatres and endoscopy and diagnostics, and because of social distancing in terms of bed numbers.
“If you implemented two-metre social distancing, you lose about 200 beds across the system. Most of those are in Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust.
“To be able to get back to the kind of activity levels we saw pre-Covid we were asked what it would take to be able to do that, and to do that we’d need modular wards, we’d need some modular theatres and we’d also need some modular diagnostics.”
He said plans to restore services have to go through a formal process, taking into account the impact it could have on other organisations.