The brand new £3 million state-of-the-art Renal Haemodialysis Unit at St Helier Hospital has been declared officially open by Nina Wadia, former EastEnders actress and star of iconic comedy show Goodness Gracious Me.
The new unit, which was completely redesigned and rebuilt, features state-of-the-art equipment and 28 haemodialysis stations (complete with individual flat screen TVs so patients can stay entertained while receiving care). The new unit is bigger and brighter than ever before, and with a number of individual dialysis rooms, will help to improve infection prevention and control standards. The new unit also offers greater accessibility (with its own entrance at the front of the hospital) and comfort to the thousands of patients who need dialysis multiple times a week for hours at a time.
Nina, who is a Patron for the National Kidney Federation and Ambassador for Kidney Research UK, is passionate about raising the profile of kidney research and treatment after her mother battled with kidney disease.
Speaking about the new facilities, Nina said: “Having seen my mum going through dialysis and a kidney transplant, it’s wonderful to see patients who look comfortable, happy and seem to know the staff well.
“Dialysis can be very hard, but facilities like this make those four hours, three times a week, a little bit easier.”
Deputy Chief Executive and Joint Medical Director, Dr James Marsh, is a renal consultant and regularly works in the new unit. He said: “I would like to say a huge thank you to Nina and her family for taking the time to visit St Helier, meet with staff and talk to patients. We are really honoured that she officially opened our new unit – it was a brilliant occasion and a very fitting launch to a department that will allow us to provide fantastic care to our kidney patient for generations.
“We are extremely proud of our new Haemodialysis Unit. It’s a fantastic light and spacious environment, filled with the latest technology. Feedback from patients since the unit first opened its doors has been overwhelmingly positive.
“It’s been a labour of love for our Renal Services and Estates and Facilities teams, and I want to say a big thank you to the teams who have brought their vison to reality – to create a comfortable, bright and inviting space for our patients.”
The Trust’s Renal Department is one of the largest in the UK (and the largest unit that does not undertake transplants), offering a wide range of services to people with kidney conditions. For more information, visit www.epsom-sthelier.nhs.uk/renal or call 020 8296 2507.