Rachel has expressed her frustration at reports in the media that the construction of the link-bridge at Worcestershire Royal Hospital is a month behind schedule.
Construction of the link-bridge, which will connect the Aconbury East Building to the main Worcestershire Royal building, began back in April and was due to be completed by December.
The refurbishment of the Aconbury East Building was planned in order to create more acute hospital beds, representing an increase in the Trust’s overall acute bed capacity during the coming Winter compared to the same period last year.
However, after reading reports in the media that construction of the link-bridge now won’t be completed until mid-January, Rachel immediately contacted Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust to express her frustration at the delay and to find out what measures Trust bosses are taking to ensure this delay doesn’t severely impact their Winter Plan.
Rachel said: “To say I’m annoyed is an understatement. I was reassured time and time again that this link-bridge would be completed and in place for the coming Winter.
“After finding out about this delay, I immediately got in touch with the Trust as I knew this news would be of huge concern to my constituents. The Alex and local health services continue to be a top my priority for me.
“I’ve been assured by the Trust that this delay does not impact on their winter plans. I will of course continue to hold them to account and will keep in contact as they implement their plans for the coming Winter.
The link-bridge construction work is being paid for from the £29.6million Acute Services Review funding. So far, thanks in part to Rachel and her fellow Worcestershire MPs’ lobbying efforts, the Trust has received £16million.
However, the Alex has not yet received any money from the £29.6million Acute Services Review funding. In total, £8million will be spent on the Alex which will pay for improvements to the elective care centre, endoscopy, children’s outpatients and an upgrade in theatres.
Rachel added: “I’m once again calling on Trust bosses to get on and submit their final business case to access the funding for the Alex. The money is sat there waiting to be used. As we’ve seen for the bids for the £16million, once submitted, the Department of Health & Social Care has approved the business cases within a matter of weeks.
“This investment is a clear sign that the Alex is here to stay and has a long-term future ahead of it.”