We are now well underway with Phase Two of the Path to Excellence programme which is the clinical transformation of local hospital services and is just one small part of how we transform ALL care locally.
Phase Two of Path to Excellence is looking at how we look after people who need an operation.
Our ‘working ideas’ for surgery have been discussed for a very long time. Surgical teams first began talking about this in 2016. They want to move forward and deliver the best possible care for patients.
When we talk about ‘surgery’ or ‘surgical services’, this covers two main areas:
- Trauma and orthopaedics – This type of surgery is to do with bones, joints and muscles. Trauma is the word we use to describe emergency operations to fix badly broken bones or injuries. For example, a broken hip. Orthopaedics is the word we use to describe planned operations on bones joints or muscles. For example, a new hip or knee replacement.
- General surgery – This type of surgery covers many parts of the body. Patients with cancer will often undergo general surgery as part of their planned treatment. The main operations we do are on the stomach (tummy), colorectal (bowels) and surgery to fix hernias. We also provide a specialist bariatric surgery service to help people with obesity. Some common emergency operations include gallbladder removal or removing a swollen or painful appendix. Most of our general surgery is now ‘keyhole’ surgery, which means a shorter stay in hospital and a quicker return to normal activities.
Clinical service review design teams led by doctors, nurses and therapy staff and NHS managers across South Tyneside and Sunderland, have been working together to discuss the challenges being faced and thousands of frontline staff, patients and members of the public have also been involved in giving their views so far.
We continue to work with staff, patients with experiences and local organisations to generate ideas and help shape solutions, as well as looking at ways to improve surgical care.