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Stanley and Maddy Greenland - visitors to open day copyMore than 900 people arrived to visit Tewkesbury’s new £10 million community hospital this week when Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust held an open day for the local community.  Hospital staff and volunteers took visitors on a guided tour around the hospital, to show the new facilities, including locally-commissioned artwork.

Visitors were also asked to suggest names for the new patient rooms. Visitors were able to talk to the Trust’s health promotion team, have a chat with occupational therapists and try out specialist aids and equipment, and find out more about the Expert Patient Programme, which supports people with long term conditions to learn self-management skills to improve the quality of their lives.

The League of Friends, which has contributed £330,000 to the hospital for specialist equipment, including x-ray facilities and bariatric beds, and other extras such as television screens, held a display stand in the foyer and welcomed visitors to the hospital.

Jean Mansfield and Milly Wood enjoy a cup of tea at Tewkesbury Community Hospital open daySusan Field director of adult services said: “The community day was all about opening the doors of the hospital to the local community, as the new hospital will be at the heart of Tewkesbury.  It was fantastic to see so many people turn up to look around, and we had lots of great ideas for naming the patient rooms too!

“We had hoped to be moving the first patients in over this weekend, but the final commissioning checks have highlighted a number of technical issues which need to be resolved before Gloucestershire Care Services can formally take over the new Tewkesbury Community Hospital building.  It means we are going to have delay moving for the final works to be completed to our satisfaction.  This is so that we can provide assurance to patients, staff and visitors that our new facilities meet the highest standards in terms of quality and safety.  At this stage, we do not have a completion date, but we will make sure that the information is well-publicised as soon as we know the detail.”

“It means that, for the time being, we will continue to run our outpatient clinics from the present hospital site, and we will be working closely with GPs and colleagues in the wider health community in Gloucestershire to make this as smooth as possible. Although we will not be receiving new admissions at present, we will continue to care for patients who are on our ward at the moment. We are communicating this information to local people via our website, the local media, League of Friends and other community groups, to make sure that we keep everyone informed.”
 
Patients, visitors and staff are requested to continue to use the Barton Road entrance to the present Tewkesbury Hospital, and use the telephone numbers. The main telephone number for the hospital will continue to be 01684 293303.
 
Susan Field added: “We know from the open day this week how excited local people are to see the new hospital opening, and we will be working hard to make sure we can be fully up and running as soon as possible.”

Occupational therapist Clarie Plummer takes a group of visitors round the new hospital copy(top): Stan and Maddy Greenland admire the artwork at the new hospital during the open day.

(middle): Jean Mansfield and Milly Wood enjoy a cup of tea

(right): Occupational therapist Claire Plummer gives visitors a guided tour of the hospital

(below): Corrie and Tara Hanley in the new courtyardCorrie and Tara Hanley besides the artwork in the new courtyard