Easy Read version of our Case for Change (published August 2021)

Our challenges and how we want to overcome them

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The people who live here

There are 1.8 million people living in Lancashire and South Cumbria. Not everybody has the same access to health services and the same chance of living a long and healthy life.

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Local people will need more health services both in and out of hospitals in the future:

  • The average age of people who live here is getting older.

  • More people in our area need care for physical and mental health than in other parts of England.

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We want to give everyone the same access to health services. We want to make sure our hospital facilities are the best they can be.

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If we do nothing:

  • We will not be able to look after everyone who needs us.

  • We will not be up-to-date with the technology we need to provide specialist treatments.

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Our hospital buildings

Some of our hospital buildings and facilities are out of date. We urgently need to spend money to update or rebuild our hospitals. They are not suitable for us to provide the services we need to. They also cost a lot more to run each year (for things like heating, power and repairs) than it would cost to run a new building.

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The buildings and facilities at Royal Preston Hospital and Royal Lancaster Infirmary need a lot of repairs and improvements so that we can keep using them. 

Furness General Hospital is quite far away from our other hospitals and is an important place for local people. The building needs work to make sure we can keep providing the services that people need. Changes are also needed so we can use technology to help staff stay connected to our other hospitals.

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Our patients and staff are not happy with the space and facilities at our hospitals:

  • There is not enough room to provide the services we want to.

  • There are not enough private rooms to give our staff and patients the space they want.

  • At some of the hospitals, it can take a long time to move from one area to another.

  • Our patients wait longer for operations, tests and cancer treatment than they should.

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If we do nothing:

  • The buildings or facilities could fail.

  • We will spend a lot more money running our hospitals and keeping them open compared to building new ones.

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Providing the best facilities

We want to provide the best care and treatment. We also want to provide more specialist services in our hospitals. We want to deliver more care closer to where people live.

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We know that having better facilities, including private rooms with a view, can help patients to get better quicker.

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Helping our economy and local people

Lots of local people work in our health and care services. Like other areas, many of our staff are close to retirement age and it can be hard to find the staff we need.

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We sometimes find it hard to attract staff to work for us. This is because our buildings are out of date and can be difficult to work in. We need to make our hospitals a great place to work.

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We have to use a lot of agency staff. This costs a lot of money and is not the best experience for our patients or other staff in the teams.

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We want Lancashire and South Cumbria to be known for providing the best care and services. We want to work with local universities to support the training of medical students, who we hope will then come to work for us.

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The New Hospitals Programme can help:

  • New buildings will give our staff the space and facilities to deliver the services local people need.

  • A nicer place to work with better facilities will attract people to work for us.

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We want to make the most of digital technology

Digital technology will help us to provide high quality care to everyone. We want to use the latest technology to make our services better.

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To keep staff and patients safe from COVID-19, we had phone or video appointments whenever we could. We want to keep working in this way where it is right for you.

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A lot of our support staff and managers worked from home during COVID-19. We want to keep working in this way where it is right for them. This can give us more space in hospitals to use for patient care.

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The New Hospitals Programme will help to make the most of digital technology:

  • When you check-in at a hospital and find your way around.

  • When we need to keep checking your blood pressure or temperature.

  • When staff from different teams or different organisations need to share information.

  • When new types of treatment are available.

How you can get involved

To be part of the conversation and to keep up to date on all the latest news and updates, start by registering for our email newsletter today.

Find out more on our Information hub

We have lots more details on the project in our Information hub. Read frequently asked questions, the latest news about the programme and stories from people in the region.

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