The first sod of an £840,000 project at a King’s Lynn hospital was ceremonially cut yesterday.

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Invited guests gathered at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital as the first turf was removed and work officially started to extend chemotherapy services and improve the palliative care day room at the Macmillan Centre.

The extension to the existing chemotherapy suite will take around five months to complete and will allow chemo services to provide more space for the existing nine treatment stations, with the potential to increase to 12.

Mark Henry, the hospital trust’s deputy chief executive, said: “We already provide chemotherapy services for the local population but what this will do is upgrade the current facilities and enable us to provide a comforting and welcoming environment for patients which we feel is very important.”

Mary Dowglass, development manager for East Anglia at Macmillan Cancer Support, added: “We are delighted work on a much-needed extension to the existing Macmillan chemotherapy unit is under way.

“The capacity of the current facilities no longer meets the needs of cancer patients from King’s Lynn and the surrounding areas. We have worked closely with the trust in achieving this exciting new development.”

The new chemo chairs will include two paid for by the listeners to the local radio station KL.FM following an appeal earlier this year and local radio presenter Simon Rowe was asked to officially start the project by cutting the turf.

Additional services provided in the enlarged chemo area will include a new drug preparation area and the project will include a full upgrade of heating, electrical and medical gas services.

Macmillan Cancer Support has put £400,000 towards the project with the hospital investing £240,000. The remaining £200,000 has come from the hospital trust’s charitable donations fund.

During the course of construction work all Macmillan Cancer Support services, along with the centre’s staff, are relocating to West Newton ward. Access will be via the West Newton or QEH West Wing entrances, both of which are sign-posted. Current patients have been notified of the change.

For the duration of the building work Shouldham ward, the hospital’s cancer in-patient ward, will also relocate temporarily - to Marham ward. Access is via the hospital main entrance and is signposted.




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