An undisturbed night’s sleep and increased privacy are just two of the positive benefits patients have expressed about the new Royal Liverpool University Hospital, as the site celebrates its one-year anniversary this week.
On 20 October 2022, the doors of the old city-centre site closed for the final time, with all services transferred to the state-of-the-art facility following a 24-day phased move plan. The completion of the long-awaited hospital, built with construction partners Laing O’Rourke, marked the beginning of a new era of healthcare in the city region.
The new Royal, which is the biggest in the country to provide inpatients with 100% single en-suite bedrooms, is improving patient experience, safety and enhanced recovery. Since moving one year ago, feedback through patient experience and engagement surveys demonstrate that 79.7% of patients have improved sleep, and there is high satisfaction reported around staff care and compassion.
Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Hospitals (LUHFT), which runs the Royal Liverpool University Hospital alongside Aintree University Hospital, Broadgreen Hospital and the Liverpool University Dental Hospital, is working to transform healthcare services in Liverpool.
LUHFT’s improvement journey focuses on successfully delivering improved standards of care and treatment for patients, alongside making their sites the best place to learn and work for its colleagues.
The opening of the hospital coincided with a number of service moves across LUHFT’s sites, as part of the Trust’s plans to better facilitate where care happens. The moves, which brought together teams into single services to make the most of specialist staff and improve outcomes for patients, has enabled the Trust to boost further investment into its hospitals.
At Aintree, as part of work to further develop urgent and emergency care provisions, stroke patients in North Mersey are now gaining quicker access to life-saving care. The newly opened Hyper Acute Stroke Unit (HASU) and Stroke Emergency Assessment Centre (SEAC), part of the North Mersey Stroke Service, is one project in a £22.5 million investment programme that is underway to improve access to services and patient experience. Aintree is also now the first hospital in Merseyside to offer two hybrid operating suites, which allows for surgery and state-of-the-art imaging to be undertaken at the same time.
At Broadgreen, fewer patients are needing to stay in hospital after surgery, as a result of a High Volume, Low Complexity Unit – a dedicated space for patients who require a procedure under local anaesthetic. This is one of the new facilities at the hospital, which is home to a number of elective surgical, diagnostic and treatment services. There is also greater investment into reablement at the site, which is helping to maximise independence and enable more patients to return home rather than into residential care.
James Sumner, Chief Executive at Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“Over the last 12 months, we’ve been laying the foundation for the greater improvement work that we need to do over the next few years. The opening of new Royal Liverpool University Hospital last year was a huge part of that – being able to finally deliver the hospital that the communities of this city deserve.
“As a result of the new hospital, alongside significant investment into improving multiple services across all our sites, we are now beginning to see progress in providing a higher standard of care for our patients and their families.”
The new Royal’s design, which reflects the patient journey by placing key specialisms adjacent to each other, provides faster access to specialist care when required and improves patient flow through treatment.
The hospital was officially opened in January 2023 by Their Royal Highnesses, the Prince and Princess of Wales. The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Steve Barclay MP, also visited the new Royal with NHS England Chief Executive, Amanda Pritchard, as the site forms part of the government’s New Hospitals Programme.
Minister for Health, Lord Markham, said:
“I want to thank staff for their tireless work during the first year since the new Royal Liverpool University Hospital has opened its doors – all patients are using single en-suite rooms and have seen improved care and treatment and NHS staff have also seen improved places to learn and work.
“Backed by over £500 million of government funding so far, this hospital is a great example of what we’re delivering through our New Hospital Programme – which is expected to be backed by over £20 billion of investment, with three already open and more due to open this year.”