Retired chief operating officer Shelagh Smith came back to cut the ribbon (Credit: BHRUT)
The facility will allow patients’ results to come back immediately, giving staff more time to make clinical decisions and cutting treatment delays.
This is expected to reduce the amount of time people spend in the emergency department leading to overall better health outcomes for them.
Recently retired chief operating officer Shelagh Smith came back to cut the ribbon.
She said: “It was lovely to come back for this. I’m so proud to see something which we’ve talked about for so long being delivered, against all odds due to the pandemic.
“It’s been a real team effort between our own teams and our partners. It’s brilliant and will make a huge difference not only to patient experience, but also in providing a better environment for our staff.”
A new larger rest area for hospital staff with a kitchen, showers and changing areas was also opened today.
It also has some office space for the emergency department team and training rooms.
Ignatius Postma, clinical leader for emergency care, said it was “great for our staff”.
He added: “We have a massive rest area, much bigger than we had before, and we are sharing it with our colleagues in acute medicine, which will help with team building.
“We now have showers, which is great as we have the option to shower before going home after a long shift, and teaching rooms. And the lab will make a huge difference to our patients and waiting times.”
The work has been funded through a £4.1 million grant from NHS England as part of a £300 million funding pot to improve urgent and emergency care across the country.
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