The hospital’s Radiology Department now boasts two CT scanners, including a new ‘state-of-the-art’ £900,000 machine – enabling over 100 extra patients to be scanned at the hospital each week. The 15-month project has seen the old radiology block undergo a £2.4 million transformation into a modern hospital department, creating a ‘spoke’ site for the Tees Valley Clinical Diagnostic Centre programme, which also includes a town centre hub in Stockton and spoke sites at Hartlepool and Redcar.
Delivered by the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board (ICB) in collaboration with North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust and South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, the Friarage spoke site is now fully complete, giving patients faster access to diagnostic tests closer to home. Patients can now benefit from two CT scanner rooms and supporting viewing rooms, a new cannulation room, two new ultrasound rooms, and a new dental scan room, plus new changing facilities and an accessible toilet. The new and upgraded machines will enable more heart patients to undergo scans at the Friarage instead of travelling to the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough
The Trust says that ‘the spoke imaging site’ is ‘just one of a series of exciting developments’ taking place at the Friarage, which also launched its £5 m endoscopy and urology diagnostic centre last year, and is set to open a brand new £35 m surgical hub in 2025.
David Gallagher, Executive Area director with the North East and North Cumbria ICB, said: “Improved access to modern diagnostic services is a key part of our commitment to reduce waiting times and improve the experience patients have. The additional scanning capacity that this new scanner gives, and the ability to provide more complex scanning closer to home, is a key part of improving services across Teesside and North Yorkshire.”