Rachel has successful secured the additional funding hospital bosses needed to submit a business case for improvement works at the Alexandra Hospital.
Following meetings with the Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust last month, it emerged that, as a result of increased costs from contractors, the £29.6million awarded to the Trust in 2017 would no longer cover the cost of planned improvement works at the Alex.
The Trust was awarded this funding by the government in 2017 to implement the plans outlined in the Future of Acute Services Review in Worcestershire.
Since then, Rachel has secured £16 million from this funding pot which has been used to build a link bridge at Worcestershire Royal Hospital and to refurb the Aconbury East Building which created a 28-bed ward. This funding was also spent on several emergency projects, including improving the safety of the Trust’s estate to enhance the quality of patient services.
The Alexandra Hospital hasn’t yet received any funding from the £29.6 million. This money will be spent on improvements to the elective care centre, endoscopy, children’s outpatients and an upgrade in theatres.
After discovering this funding would no longer cover the costs of works at the Alex due to inflationary pressures, Rachel lobbied the Health & Social Secretary, Matt Hancock, to increase the capital funding the Trust needs from £29.6 million to £31.9 million.
Today (October 16th) it has been confirmed Rachel has secured the additional funding the Trust needed after the Secretary of State agreed that his Department will provide additional capital funding to ensure the Trust can deliver the improvements at the Alex to benefit local patients. The Trust will repay this capital funding to the Department in the coming years.
This now means that the Trust can get on and submit their final business case and get the contractors in place to start the improvement works at the Alex.
Rachel said: “This is absolutely fantastic news. The Trust can now get on and submit their final business case for the much needed improvement works at the Alex – something everyone in Redditch has waited far too long for.
“After I found out the Trust needed additional funding I worked tirelessly to lobby the Health Secretary to get him to agree to the increase. I’m grateful for Matt Hancock’s help with this & I know he realised this funding was desperately needed.
“Now the Trust has got the money they asked for, I’m now urging them to submit their final business case to the Department for Health & Social Care as soon as possible. We need to see this investment on the ground and the improvements made at the Alex which we were promised three years ago now.
“The Alex has and always will be my top priority and I will continue to do everything I can to support our town’s hospital.
“I’ve been fighting for the Alex ever since I was first elected and it just goes to show that, when I stand up for our hospital, we will get results. The Alex has a bright future and the fight continues to get services back at the Alex.”