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ORTHOPAEDICS

February 06, 2003 4:10 PM

Addressing orthopaedic capacity, both in terms of theatre availability and beds, is one of the major priorities for NHS Greater Glasgow. The solutions to will take some time to implement, however, and we have been engaging with the consultant staff to discuss the way forward for the service. The next major meeting is scheduled for 14 February. In the meantime, we have many patients facing long waits for orthopaedic treatment. We have to consider short-term measures to ensure these patients are treated as quickly as possible. We have therefore been exploring additional capacity both elsewhere in Scotland and the UK. These considerations have been well publicised previously. Specifically, the option of using capacity in the facility at the Wirral is still under discussion and, as yet, nothing has been finalised. Patients with head injuries are a complex group to manage. It is essential that they can be closely supervised by suitably qualified medical staff. When the new A&E Department opened at the Jubilee Building, it was necessary to move these patients and locate them close to the A&E consultant staff. The orthopaedics ward was a suitable, clinically safe, short-term solution whilst longer term arrangements could be made. We have since secured additional funding from GGNHSB to provide an extra 12 beds within the Jubilee Building in order to address the situation. We are unaware of any concerns about equipment delays. Substantial investment in region of £250k has recently been agreed to purchase new equipment for orthopaedics. Orders have been placed and we anticipate that the equipment will be delivered within 6-8 weeks.

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