Construction and engineering work is well underway as part of the modernisation and refurbishment of Ward 10 at Withybush Hospital.
Building work started on the project in April 2019 and the ward is now starting to take shape. Although some of the early stages of construction work has taken slightly longer than planned, Hywel Dda University Health Board confirms that the work is expected to be completed early in the New Year. In the meantime, Ward 10 patients are currently being cared for in the repurposed Ward 9 area whilst the building works on Ward 10 are carried out.
Working in partnership with key stakeholders, the Health Board is keen to ensure the improved facility strengthens services and provides a better environment and inpatient experience in a modern, purpose built, fit for the future facility, in which to care for designated oncology and haematology patients, and those with complex palliative care needs.
The refurbished ward 10 area will provide five en-suite single beds to enable greater privacy during care and for access by neutropenic sepsis patients and those requiring isolation facilities. Smaller bays (2 x 4 bedded bays and 1 x 3 bedded bay) are also being developed as well as improved overnight facilities for relatives plus a dedicated day/dining room for patients. There will also be a dedicated multi-disciplinary team meeting and video conferencing facility, as well as much needed storage space to support a safer and improved environment and to comply with the relevant infection prevention and fire safety standards.
Whilst the majority of funding for the development is provided by Welsh Government, more than £500,000 of charitable donations are contributing to the scheme from the health board’s Pembrokeshire Cancer Services Fund, Elly’s Ward 10 Flag Appeal, together with significant donations also received from the late Luke Harding and his family.
Dr Andrew Burns, Hospital Director at Withybush said: “Our partners, charity and fundraising representatives in the local community are integral to the development of this project. We very much value, and thank them all for, their ongoing involvement and support.”
Lyn Neville, Elly’s father, added: "We are very proud with all that Elly’s Ward 10 Flag Appeal has achieved, having now raised over £208,000 for cancer patients on Ward 10, and we wish to thank everyone who has supported and encouraged us over the last four and a half years. We are very excited that our hard work will soon come to fruition when the ward re-opens in the New Year, at which point patients and staff will experience an enhanced and much more comfortable environment in which to receive care and treatment and to work in.”
The Harding family commented: “Fundraising initiated by Luke Harding when he was originally diagnosed with lung and brain cancer, has been allocated in line with his wish towards the new facilities at Withybush Hospital’s Ward 10, where he received treatment. Luke's vision, that whilst medical care is vital, the provision of non-clinical relaxation areas for patients and their families is also essential towards quality of life, wellbeing and retaining as much personal dignity and normality as possible.
“With supporters who contributed throughout the world, the majority known to him, others not, but all touched by his selflessness, openness, and determination to make a difference, we as #teamharding are pleased that this has been recognised.”
The Health Board has been closely working with stakeholders to identify innovative ways to significantly improve the patient experience on ward 10, involving engagement with fundraisers and donors, members of the ward 10 Stakeholder Group (including the Community Health Council), patients, ward 10 staff, the hospital’s management team and other key staff groups. The improvements feature items to make a patient’s stay in hospital more comfortable, including additional patient comforts, enhancing the ward environment generally, specialist equipment, staff training and technology.
Ward Sister Nicola Zroud commented: “Our patients and staff will benefit so much from this enhancement of the ward, which would not be possible without the fantastic generosity of our fundraisers and donors. We are extremely grateful to everyone involved and keenly await the ward’s re-opening.”