Leeds hospitals’ services move to save cash

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Two Leeds hospital services are to be moved in the first wave of changes as part of a plan to save £55m.

Radiology at St James’s Hospital is to be centralised to increase efficiency and provide more privacy for patients.

Pathology services currently run from a leased building in Morley are to be brought back to St James’s to save money, cut maintenance costs and boost productvity.

Directors at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust also agreed in principle to invest £2.9m on other moves, mainly out of the oldest parts of Leeds General Infirmary.

The proposals are part of a major cost-cutting plan by the hospitals trust.

As previously reported in the Yorkshire Evening Post, 200 beds will be cut and five operating theatres shut.

A report to hospital bosses says: “In order to reduce bed numbers - whilst maintaining or improving clinical adjacencies - the recommended option is for some specialties to move to either a different hospital wing or site.”

Key changes involve more children’s services going to Clarendon Wing at LGI, orthopaedics and head and neck services moving out of the old Gilbert Scott building at LGI and criticially, centralising gastrointestinal surgery at St James’s.

The changes will cost nearly £3m but will save over £9m a year. Medical director Pete Belfield told hospital directors that the moves were the first step in other developments, including consideration of maternity and neonatal services which are the only ones not based on the same hospital site.

The YEP reported earlier this year that hospital heads were to look at the set-up of maternity care, currently at both LGI and St James’s.

The radiology moves will see x-ray and ultrasound transferring from Lincoln Wing at St James’s to Chancellor Wing at a cost of £1.1m.

Moving three pathology services to the hospital will cost £3m, but this will be recovered within three years.

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