By: 12 September 2023
New theatre investment at Wrightington Hospital

A brand new theatre is to be built at Wrightington Hospital, investing in Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s (WWL) ability to reduce waiting lists and further reinforce the hospital’s status as a regional orthopaedic hub.

The new theatre will address the need to build capacity on elective sites – a key strategy for the NHS in tackling long waits for surgery. With the existing bay of recovery beds set to be increased from three to five, and housed in a purpose-built new area, the expansion of capacity at Wrightington will also reduce pressure on theatre and bed capacity at the Royal Albert Edward Infirmary site at Wigan.

The ambition is for around 1,200 high-volume, low complexity orthopaedic procedures per year to be carried out within the new facility. Orthopaedics is the largest volume elective specialty in Greater Manchester (GM), so this additional capacity will aid the reduction of NHS waiting lists across the region.

Funding of the £6.1m build is being provided by the NHS England Targeted Investment Funds (TIF) programme, which is a national initiative targeted towards increasing NHS elective and diagnostic capacity in response to the rising elective backlogs resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Speaking on the investment, WWL’s Director of Strategy and Planning, Richard Mundon said: “I am delighted that we have been able to attract this level of external investment to provide more of the excellent orthopaedic services that thousands of patients already receive every year at Wrightington.

“The regional and national endorsement of this scheme is reinforcement of the hospital’s status as a regional orthopaedic hub and the development aligns neatly with our Trust strategy and future development plans for the site.”

Subject to planning permission, construction on the new theatre is expected to start early in the new year and will be operational by autumn 2024.