Major improvement works at Lewes Victoria Hospital - here's all you need to know

Major improvement works are set to start at Lewes Victoria Hospital.

The Minor Injuries Unit (MIU) is being upgraded to an Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC) as part of ongoing efforts to support the local healthcare system, and free up emergency care for those who need it most NHS England said.

Lewes Victoria Hospital

Lewes Victoria Hospital

The works are due to start on November 6, and are expected to be finished by April 2020.

All other services at the hospital will continue as normal while the MIU closes temporarily to allow the improvement works to take place, NHS England confirmed.

Dr Elizabeth Gill, clinical chair for High Weald Lewes Havens CCG, said: “We are committed to ensuring patients receive the best treatment possible in the right setting for them and we can deliver this with the new national urgent treatment centre standard.

"We thank local people for their understanding while the building works take place, which will hugely improve the provision of care the local community receive for many years to come.”

UTCs are GP-led and open at least 12 hours a day, every day. They offer appointments that can be booked through NHS111 or you can just walk in.

They are equipped to diagnose and deal with many of the most common ailments people attend A&E for such as strains and sprains, eye problems, suspected broken limbs, abdominal pain, minor head injuries or cuts that need stitches.

During the improvement works, the following alternative services are available to support people who need urgent care:

- If you need medical help and you’re not sure where to go call 111 first or go online to 111.nhs.uk. Calls are free from landlines and mobiles and advice is available 24/7, 365 days of the year

- Community pharmacists can give clinical advice and over-the-counter medicines for a range of minor illnesses

- Evening and weekend appointments with GPs or other healthcare professionals are available from 6.30pm to 8pm on weekdays and from 9am to 1pm on Saturdays and Sundays. More information is available at your local practice.

In addition, while the MIU at Lewes is closed, people will be able to access the same services at Uckfield Community Hospital MIU on Framfield Road, Uckfield TN22 5AW, which is open from 8am-8pm, seven days a week.

The improvement works to Lewes MIU include redesigning the layout to better help nurses care for patients, freeing up more room for patients who need care, providing additional space for support staff, improving infection control and building new, modern toilets.