Aug 07th 2014
Rowley Regis does the double
7 August 2014… Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust is celebrating another milestone this week as Rowley Regis Community Hospital marks its 20th anniversary.
To join in with the celebrations and highlight the important role played by the hospital, the Trust Board visited Rowley Regis today to meet with members of staff and cut a huge anniversary cake which was shared by the whole team. Trust chairman, Richard Samuda said: “Our stated aim is to become renowned as the best integrated care organisation in the NHS. Rowley Regis Community Hospital is pivotal to realising that aim as we look to expand community healthcare and bring treatment closer to home for the 500,000 people we serve in the area. Today we acknowledge the tremendous contribution made by all the staff to the health and welfare of the Rowley Regis population.”
The hospital was opened in 1994 by the Duchess of Kent and in 2002 it joined with City Hospital, Birmingham and Sandwell Hospital, West Bromwich to become one Trust, Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust. It mainly provides rehabilitation and ready-to-go care for patients awaiting discharge. It has also recently extended its range of services to include outpatient clinics across a dozen specialisms. Patients can come to Rowley Regis Community Hospital to access services such as X-ray, ultrasound and blood tests and to receive support with orthopaedic and foot health and musculo-skeletal conditions.
In January this year, the hospital opened a Primary Care Assessment and Treatment Centre which brought day hospital staff and General Practitioners together to provide an assessment, diagnostic and treatment service that GPs, ambulance teams and community practitioners can refer to as a robust community alternative for some conditions, rather than sending patients to emergency departments. This ensures that care remains closer to home and unnecessary journeys and admissions to hospital are avoided.
There have been several highlights in the hospital’s history, with it becoming a nostalgia hub to mark the 60th birthday of the NHS in 2008 featuring an exhibition of vintage hospital equipment and photos. Then in 2009, another key milestone was celebrated when local fundraising group, the Rowley Regis League of Friends, topped £200,000 in donations to the hospital.
Sarah Whitcombe, a senior sister at Rowley Regis Community Hospital said, “We are very lucky to have this facility in such a lovely environment. Over the last 20 years, I have seen our beautiful gardens mature and become filled with wildlife. Several of us have been here since the beginning and are repeatedly told by patients that our hospital is a real contrast to acute settings, offering a change of pace and a close knit familiarity among staff and patients. Our focus has changed over time and we are now dedicated to returning healthy patients to their homes where they feel happiest as quickly as possible and offering easy access to a range of other services for local people. Long may it continue.”
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