Publish date: 09 September 2021

The emergency department at University College Hospital is set to undergo an ambitious refurbishment project of the resuscitation (resus) area.

This will see the creation of four negative pressured cubicles to safely treat patients requiring resuscitation level care, regardless of infectious status, such as with COVID-19.

These works will improve clinical specification, infection isolation, patient privacy, and appearance. There will be a comprehensive ventilation balance between each individual resus cubicle, the remaining resus area and all the surrounding areas, so that all patients and members of staff remain protected.

Currently, patients with a potential infection status are mostly treated in majors cubicles with appropriate resus equipment, but this refurbishment will mean all critical patients can be treated in the resus room and allow normal majors flow.

The work will start at the beginning of August and is envisaged to take eight weeks, ahead of winter. During this time, please follow current procedures for patients who are COVID-19 positive or query COVID-19.

While the work is underway, we have a number of mitigations in place to ensure patients can still get the best care. We will: 

  • Continue to flexibly use the cubicles in Majors, where there are 10 rooms prepared with Resus equipment able to provide full respiratory support.
  • Ensure effective use of SDEC pathway to reduce length of stay in Majors.
  • Continue with the close monitoring of length of stay and close collaboration with the co-ordination centre to minimise delays.
  • Increase bed capacity for late July along with early escalation to the rest of UCLH for initiation of full capacity protocol. 
  • Have continuous communications to staff/all members of MDT and LAS. 
  • Have on-going robust project management and have engaged early with suppliers to wherever possible assure timelines for build are met.

Tania Leal, clinical projects manager for the emergency services division, said: “This will mean that we can provide appropriate resuscitation facilities in the ED to protect patients and staff in the peri and post COVID-19 era, future proofing the department.

“We would like to thank all staff for their understanding while the work is underway. We are informing our partner organisations to make them aware of the changes.”

If you have any questions or concerns, please speak to your line manager.