Work starts to extend Chesterfield Royal Hospital's emergency department
Work is underway to make Chesterfield Royal Hospital's emergency department bigger.
The work began after Chesterfield Borough Council granted Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust conditional planning permission to extend the vital department.
In its planning application, the trust said it wanted to enlarge the emergency department to meet 'growing' demand.
A Royal spokesman said this week: "We are delighted to have conditional planning permission for this exciting project which is set to improve urgent care services for our patients.
"People can already see that we've started work in the department and outside on the roadway.
"We're extending the building at the front to increase the department’s size and create a streaming desk where an experienced nurse will be able to quickly assess a patient and decide if they need emergency or GP treatment.
"This development will make a huge difference to the care we provide - making sure patients are seen in the right place in a timely manner."
The trust's planning application stated: "The emergency department at Chesterfield Royal Hospital is currently running above capacity and in need of expansion.
"The need for expansion is driven by the growing number of patients visiting the department and the need to increase the department's capacity to accommodate that demand.
"Capacity of the existing emergency department started to become particularly stretched in January to February.
"High attendance resulted in patients being left on trolleys in corridors or moved to other spaces which were poor experiences for patients and not efficient for the functioning of the department."
When the Royal's emergency department opened in 1984, it saw less than half the patients it does now, which is currently recorded at around 80,000.