Almost £1million is to be spent improving the emergency department at Scarborough Hospital - just a week after fears were raised that A&E could be downgraded.
Construction work has started to create five extra cubicles for patients, which bosses say should mean improved access and reduced waiting times for patients.
David Thomas, directorate manager for the emergency department at Scarborough Hospital, said: “This is fantastic news for the people of Scarborough and surrounding areas. Investing, improving and expanding the clinical area of the emergency department will enable us to better meet the clinical needs of our patients’.
“The extra space will offer patients more comfort and privacy, while creating a modern, up to date working environment for our staff - which will enable us to continue to deliver high quality urgent and emergency care.”
The trust says there will be no disruption to patients coming into the department and the work is expected to be completed in December. It has been funded thanks to an allocation of £950,000 from NHS Improvement earlier this year.
Mike Proctor, chief executive of York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “This is an exciting development as it will provide much needed space within the emergency department, which will enhance the high-quality care we provide and reduce waiting times for our patients.
“We are committed to providing an emergency department at Scarborough Hospital and securing this funding emphasises just how important the hospital is, not just for the public, but for our staff as well. It is also a clear demonstration of the Trust’s support for sustainable and thriving services on the East Coast.”
An online petition has attracted thousands of signatures from people living along the coast after fears were raised that A&E and maternity services could be affected by a review.
But the trust has insisted the review is in its early stages and there are no current plans to downgrade A&E at Scarborough.