Redevelopment work is continuing at the West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven, with cardiology and vascular services now located in the centre of the new hospital.

The department can now be accessed off the main corridor, next to the restaurant, making it easier for patients to access services.

The new facilities have been designed specifically for the specialist departments, allowing dedicated rooms to be used rather than shared facilities of the previous area. There is an additional consulting room, a dedicated pacemaker room and a treadmill room. The move also allows patients to have scans and then be seen by a consultant in one place.

North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust is nearing the completion of Phase 1b of the redevelopment, with the breast screening service also due to move into its new home in the coming weeks. This follows Phase 1, which was completed in October 2015 with the opening of the new £90m hospital.

Alan Jennison, senior chief cardiac physiologist at the trust, said: “The new facilities are absolutely brilliant. We are much closer to the heart of the hospital and it means much improved access for our patients. It’s much brighter and roomier than before. It’s a wonderful place to work.

“The building has also been designed to be ‘future proof’, meaning we will be able to accommodate future improvements as the service develops, which is brilliant news for the people of West Cumbria.”

Patient Graham Robinson of Crosby, near Maryport, said: “I’ve been coming to the hospital since 2006 and have been in the old and new departments, the improvements are fantastic. Everything is better, the rooms, waiting areas, access, parking, it’s much brighter and what the hospital needed. The staff here are all pleasant and I wouldn’t want to go anywhere else.”

Outline business cases are currently in development for further phases of the redevelopment work at hospital including the demolition of the old hospital buildings and plans to provide more accommodation and academic facilities with University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).