The North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust has announced the receipt of final approval for West Cumberland Hospital’s Phase 2 redevelopment.

With the go-ahead granted by the UK Department of Health, works on the development’s next phase will now commence.

Earlier this year, the nearly $54m (£40m) full business case was submitted to the department. 

The Phase 2 will involve restoration of up to 40% of the original hospital.

It follows Phase 1 of the project, which saw an investment of $121.4m (£90m) and was concluded in 2015.

The new structure will include a paediatric ward, elderly ward, specialist palliative care/step downward as well as stroke/rehabilitation ward.

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Upgrade to the facilities will create an enhanced environment for both the hospital staff and patients.

The trust will use its own capital programme to fund the costs of the project’s refurbishment part. This is to ensure the Phase 2 plans are realised within the national funding allocation.

The clinically led and future fit design of the Phase 2 redevelopment is the result of collaboration between staff from across the trust.

Based on the feedback from patients, four-bedded areas and single rooms will be made available for elderly care. Best practices in infection prevention will be strictly observed in all areas.

North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust chief executive Lyn Simpson said: “This is a huge milestone for the project and one which colleagues have been working tirelessly towards. 

“This new environment will make such a difference to both our patients and our staff. We’re thrilled that the scheme has been approved and work can now get underway.”  

In May last year, West Cumberland Hospital expanded its Emergency Assessment Unit to boost patient care and experience.