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Hospital sets up temporary operating theatre in car park

The facility at University Hospital Hairmyres in East Kilbride will be up and running from January.

Temporary: An operating theatre is being set up in the car park.

A temporary operating theatre is being set up in a hospital car park while upgrade works are carried out. 

The facility at University Hospital Hairmyres in East Kilbride will be up and running from January, while “long standing” plans to improve an operating theatre inside are completed.

The process is expected to take 26 weeks but has attracted criticism from Monica Lennon MSP.

The Scottish Labour health spokeswoman claimed “patients deserve better”.

Lennon said: “My first reaction when I saw the temporary buildings was that they were huts for construction workers.

“It beggars belief that this passes for an operating theatre.

“Patients deserve better than this and it’s appalling that surgeons and theatre staff are expected to work in this environment.

‘Patients deserve better than this and it’s appalling that surgeons and theatre staff are expected to work in this environment.’

Monica Lennon MSP, Scottish Labour health spokeswoman

“I don’t know what NHS Lanarkshire bosses are thinking but this is a backwards step.”

Russell Coulthard, director of hospital services at Hairmyres, said “similar temporary theatre units” have been used elsewhere in the UK.

He explained: “We have long standing plans to upgrade one of our operating theatres.

“To allow us to carry out this work, and ensure there is no impact on patient services, it is essential that we have an alternative theatre.

“As such, we are commissioning a temporary theatre facility situated by the main hospital building.

“This is a fully functioning, modern, operating theatre which adheres to national infection prevention and control guidelines.

“Similar temporary theatre units are currently in operation successfully across the UK.

“The facility is expected be operational from January 2020 and the theatre upgrade work is expected to take 26 weeks.”

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