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£2 million upgrade begins to improve Emergency Department at Derriford Hospital

Photo: ITV West Country

There will be disruption at Derriford Hospital from tomorrow as work on £2million improvements to their Emergency Department begins.

Although the Emergency Department will remain open as usual, it'll be smaller. Patients are being urged to think carefully before going there and are being asked to consider going to one of the minor injuries units or calling NHS 111 instead.

The building work will improve the resuscitation unit within the hospital - nearly doubling its size from four to seven bays.

Credit: ITV West Country

The work will start March 6th and continue for ten days.

Derriford's Chief Executive has described the Emergency Department as "not fit for purpose".

Built in the 1970s, the hospital is now the major trauma centre for the whole of the south west. Some say it's simply not big enough for an ageing population.

At the end of last year it was awarded government funding of £30 million to create a new Accident and Emergency hub.

This will include special areas for children and frail patients and will give the staff "space to care".

Over the past years the numbers of patients attending Derriford Hospital has increased hugely.

Chief Executive Ann James revealed to ITV News last month that they were saw 1,000 more patients in January this year than they had the year before and an additional 15 ambulances were arriving at the hospital every day.