History of Noble's Hospital

Find out about the hospital in these news articles and interesting facts.

History of Noble's Hospital

With the opening of the new hospital in July 2003, the equivalent of over 100 more full time positions were created by Government in order to provide new services or as a result of changes to working practices which have been introduced in the interests of greater clinical efficiency.

About 170 additional staff members have been recruited - many of them part time. Of the new recruits around 60% are local residents, the majority of the remainder joining from the British Isles.

Recruitment, whether in the areas of nursing, physiotherapy or housekeeping is in the hands of Bev Critchlow, Director of Nursing, Midwifery and Professional Development. She says:

'The reason we have been so successful is because we have sold the major attributes of the Island to staff coming from the UK, by which I mean our quality of life. Allied to this is the new hospital that is so impressive it has become a major selling point for us.' 

When the hospital opened its doors on 14 July 2003, visitors discovered that several new services have been introduced - such as a magnetic resonance imaging body scanner which will mean around 500 patients not having to travel to the UK each year.

The facilities and layout of the building have been designed in such a way to provide for more specialist areas. Bev Critchlow takes up the story:

'One example is where intensive care and coronary care are to be separate units. The change in care delivery means an even better service for patients, but does require more specialist staff to care for patients in 2 areas.

'The services at Braddan are designed much more around the needs of patients which has brought about a necessity to enhance our staffing knowledge, skills and numbers in some areas. We have always needed specialists in coronary care and ITU, but by splitting the units it means we require more of those people. There are some services we have never delivered before so some skills are not currently available in the Island.'

There is also a change in the way the Accident and Emergency department functions and the manner in which it is accessed by patients. The unit has been designed to focus on one area for major injuries with another one for less serious injuries.

Another innovation relates to orthopaedics where in the new hospital they will be looked after in separate wards. This change of emphasis will lead to greater clinical efficiency with beds being used more effectively, leading in turn to improved management of waiting lists and limiting the risk of infections being transmitted from patient to patient.

Bev's role involves being lead nurse for Noble's Hospital as well as planning, at a strategic level, education and development for professional staff. She also advises the Minister of Health on any matters covering nursing, nursing policy and development. In regard to the new hospital she was handed responsibility for all issues relating to staff.

Working with Pauline Bromby, Employee Relations Advisor, and Linda Lally from the Commissioning Team, she has responsibility for supporting staff through the change process, training and orientation, employee relations, discussions with the unions, planning working practices, and of course recruitment.

Says Bev:

'Obviously the recruitment aspect has been a major task as we have had to ensure there are adequate staff numbers across almost thirty different disciplines. However, we are really pleased with our success rate which has been quite astonishing considering we are operating in a very difficult job market.'