skip to main content

Surgical Assessment Unit launched

01 February 2022

Welcome to the Surgical Assessment Unit - a nurse in a light blue staff nurse uniform, stands at a high reception desk, with a senior nurse in a navy blue uniform sitting down on the other side of the desk. They appear to be talking to each other. The ward, with three hospital beds in, with curtain dividers, is visible behind them, along with a man standing at a raised laptop computer terminal and another nurse in a blue uniform. The wall on the far side is a blue-green colour, with the rest of the walls, the floor and the reception desk all white/ cream in colour.  

Following successful pilots, the James Paget has opened a new Surgical Assessment Unit, located adjacent to Ward 5 in the hospital.

The creation of the Surgical Assessment Unit (SAU) will provide better outcomes for patients coming into the hospital from the Emergency Department by enabling more rapid assessment and treatment through a dedicated team.

In addition to receiving referrals from hospital’s Emergency Department, the SAU will also accept direct referrals from local GPs. Each referral will be assessed by the SAU Surgical Registrar and will result in either the patient being admitted to hospital, provided treatment then discharged, or discharged with the request to return at a later date for diagnostic tests or a planned surgical procedure.

Mr Roshan Lal, the Trust’s Consultant Colorectal & General Surgeon, supported the development of the James Paget’s Surgical Assessment Unit: “Setting up the SAU is a huge step forward for our hospital, following extensive trials and drawing on the experiences at other hospitals in improving rapid access to surgery for patients, where it is needed.

“This will also have a significant impact on waiting times in our Emergency Department, ensuring that people that come to our hospital with surgical needs are seen as quickly as possible, and get further assessment and treatment where required. Opening the Unit up to referrals from local GPs will also support patients, and reduce unnecessary admissions where possible.”

The SAU is a purpose built unit located adjacent to Ward 5, consisting of a three trolleyed bay and consultation room, as well as a small waiting area.