NHS Fife announced at a board meeting last week that it intended to submit an outline business case for a state-of-the-art elective orthopaedic facility at the Victoria Hospital, Kirkcaldy. The proposal, which is being prepared at the invitation of the Scottish Government, will address major concerns about health and safety and infection control risks. Operations have previously been disrupted due to drainage problems in the 1967-built structure and services have been hampered by flooding, leaks and electrical issues.
NHS Fife’s orthopaedics service has been commended for its excellence in care by the British Orthopaedic Society. However, it is currently the only in-patient department left in the hospital’s deteriorating tower block which is in need of major refurbishment estimated at £29 million.
A report prepared by Victoria Hospital Estates Department in 2017 put the capital cost of the development, comprising three wards and a supporting ward, at £8.8 million.
NHS Fife Chair, Tricia Marwick, welcomed the invitation as the first stage of approval by the Scottish Government, “The number of patients requiring orthopaedic intervention, such as hip or knee replacement, continues to rise and is one of the most common surgical procedures undertaken in the NHS,” she said.
“Fife is fortunate to have one of the best renowned and most forward-thinking orthopaedic teams anywhere in the country and I am delighted we have been invited to produce an outline business case for three new theatres and supporting ward area.
“This is the first stage of approval by the Scottish Government and it would see the construction of a new-build elective orthopaedic centre at the Victoria Hospital, Kirkcaldy. The specialist centre will require significant capital investment to complete and will put Fife at the heart of orthopaedic excellence across Scotland.”