Louth hospital upgrade work starts after fire concerns

County Hospital, Louth Image copyright Google
Image caption A total of 25 patients were transferred to other hospitals or care providers and may not return to Louth to finish their treatment

Work has begun to improve fire safety at a hospital in Lincolnshire.

Patients were moved out of two wards at Louth's County Hospital last month over fire inspectors' concerns about the "ageing fabric of the building".

The work, which includes upgrades to alarms and fire doors, is expected to take up to three months to complete.

Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust said 25 patients had moved and may not be returning to finish their treatment at the hospital.

Craig McLean, deputy director of operations at the trust, said: "It may well be that the decision is taken that it's appropriate for them to finish their treatment where they are rather than disrupting them again and bringing them back."

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The number of beds was reduced from 50 to 16 across Manby and Carlton wards. The trust said there would be "a phased reopening of beds until the two wards return to their original capacity" when the work was completed.

It had said the move was "a precautionary measure" and not in response to the Grenfell Tower fire in west London.

Patients have been transferred to other hospitals or care providers. Those who were due to be discharged were sent home with planned packages of care, a spokesperson for the trust said.

NHS Property Services, which owns the hospital, said the upgrade works also included improving fire exit signs, lighting and changes to escape routes and walls.

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