Guernsey hospital wing to remain open

image captionMr Cooke said the closure allowed for greater flexibility

A ward at the Princess Elizabeth Hospital that was due to close will remain open as another ward is being forced to remain closed.

In October the Health and Social Services Department said it would close the private Victoria Wing for four months due to a shortage of nurses.

Part of this plan was the reopening of Ozanne Ward, which has been delayed.

The department said it hoped to have sufficient staff in place to allow Ozanne Ward to reopen in the spring.

Mark Cooke, chief officer, said: "While we are now in a position to keep Victoria Wing open, the staffing issues that prompted the proposed closure still remain."

Work being carried out on the floor of the Ozanne Ward revealed problems with the floor structure meaning the entire top layer had to be replaced.

He said the closure would give much greater flexibility and enable the hospital to continue to cover four wards.

'No increased wait'

Mr Cooke said: "This option means that we will have 47 surgical beds available, with the potential to increase to 49 if necessary.

"It also means we will have a total of 25 single rooms available, as opposed to only eight if we had stayed with the proposal to temporarily close Victoria Wing."

The change, which is due to come into force on 22 November, will also see Giffard Ward used for orthopaedics and gynaecology and Victoria Wing used for general surgery and private patients.

Mr Cooke said: "Patients booked for admission after that date are being contacted to inform them accordingly.

"There will be no overall reduction in the number of patients we see and no increase in the times people have to wait.

"I am very sorry to any patient or member of staff who feel they have been inconvenienced by any of the changes."

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