A time capsule has been buried at the site of a new specialist emergency care hospital to celebrate a year to its opening.
Employees at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust yesterday buried the time capsule at the Cramlington hospital’s site, containing a variety of items used by NHS staff when caring for the 500,000 people in North Tyneside and Northumberland.
A pack of swabs for screening MRSA, a staff magazine marking the visit from NHS Medical Director Sir Bruce Keogh, and information about the recent staff awards highlighting the work of Northumbria staff are just some of the items that have been included in the capsule.
Consultant microbiologist Dr Bryan Marshall, who donated medical swabs, said: “I wanted to show clinicians of the future how they have been actively fighting to stop the spread of antibiotic resistance to ensure that antibiotics will work for future generations.”
Medical Director David Evans said the ceremony marked a great new era in emergency care in the North East.
He said: “This is an exciting time for everyone at Northumbria Healthcare. I was delighted to see the magazine highlighting the visit of Prof Sir Bruce Keogh; he said the hospital was a glimpse of the future. We are all very proud of the new hospital and the improved care it will give to seriously ill or injured patients.”
The new hospital will be the first in the country dedicated to providing emergency care with A&E consultants working 24/7 to care for seriously ill or injured patients.
The specialist emergency care hospital is part of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s £200m investment plans for the population of North Tyneside and Northumberland.
It is a facility that is in line with Sir Keogh’s recommendations for major emergency centres with consistent levels of senior staffing and access to the specialist equipment and expertise needed to deliver the best outcomes for patients.
On a visit to the hospital site earlier this year, Sir Keogh, author of the recent Urgent and Emergency Care Review, said that the hospital would work in collaboration with existing services, and although some patients would have to travel further he insisted the “results will be much better.”
He said: “I think this is a fantastic endeavour and when it is complete it will bring something really very special to the people of this region.
“Medicine has become more and more complicated over the last two or three decades and people who are ill need more complex care and more specialist care. We have recently done a review of how urgent and emergency care services could be provided.
“One of the things we concluded is that we needed to have specialist centres to focus very specifically on dealing with very ill people in emergency situations and this is exactly the sort of place that we had envisaged. I think I have had a glimpse of the future.”
The hospital is due for completion in June next year.