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Saturday, 29 November 2014

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Cockermouth's new £11m hospital officially opened

Cockermouth's new £11 million community hospital has been given the seal of approval by the NHS’s most senior figure.

Cockermouth hospital photo
The new Cockermouth hospital

Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, medical director of NHS England, officially opened the hospital on Isel Road yesterday.

The facility has been open to the public since January and replaced the 100-year-old cottage hospital next door.

The new hospital has self check-in areas, a reception area, pharmacy and colour-coded waiting areas for the Castlegate and Derwent House surgeries, which between them serve 16,000 people. The surgeries are designed around a nursing hub. There is an 11-bed in-patient ward, with en-suite facilities, a minor injuries unit, X-ray facilities and two education rooms.

Community services, including district nurses, midwives and health visitors, are also based there.

Sir Bruce, the man whose review of standards put north Cumbria’s acute hospitals into special measures, was given a tour of the building and then unveiled a plaque to mark the official opening.

He said: “I am very impressed with the building. I am also impressed that after the floods your GPs responded in quite an extraordinary way to see something built that was better than before.

“What you see here is a lot of services that would normally be in different places, under one roof. The whole design of the building is to make it easier for the patients.”

Dr John Howarth, a director for Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and an-ex Cockermouth GP, said: “I am absolutely delighted to have Sir Bruce here to open the new hospital. I know he was impressed with the staff here and the building.”

“We have had extremely positive feedback from people using the facility.”

Phil Campbell, chairman of Cockermouth Civic Trust, presented the hospital with a certificate of commendation for the excellent design of the building.

There was also a health fair open to the public so they could find out about the services available in the hospital.

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