Over £9 million will be invested in two Sussex hospitals to fund new care facilities for patients, a trust has confirmed.

A new Urgent Treatment Centre is set to be built in Worthing Hospital to help treat patients who need immediate, but not lifesaving, care.

The centre comes as St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester is also due to receive a Same Day Emergency Care Unit which will help to treat emergency patients who do not need to stay the night.

Stephen Mardlin, director of Worthing Hospital, said: “Colleagues are ecstatic that this is happening. We’ll have a slicker, smoother process for patients in a larger emergency department, with a new UTC right at the front door of the hospital.

“This development will free up capacity in the A&E, improve efficiency, improve waiting times, and we’ll be able to see more people, more efficiently.”

Work on the Worthing site is scheduled to begin in December with plans to have the site open in 2024.

The Argus: St Richard's Hospital, ChichesterSt Richard's Hospital, Chichester

The new development would see an extra 40,000 patients a year, with the hospital currently seeing just under 70,000 walk-in emergency patients per year.

Similarly, work on the Chichester unit has already begun and will be completed in the new year.

Each development is expected to cost around £4.5 million.


Dr Neal Gent, clinical lead for acute medicine at St Richard’s Hospital, said: “Our new SDEC unit will be an enormous improvement on what we currently have.

“The development will vastly increase our ability to assess, investigate and treat patients without them having to be admitted overnight onto a ward and hospital bed.

“The new unit will also allow us to offer our staff better training and career development, with a team of Advanced Care Practitioners now enhancing the nursing team.”

The new Chichester unit will include treatment and consultation rooms, treatment bays and a waiting room.

Investment in the site is part of a £250 million funding boost nationally to increase capacity in emergency departments.

University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust, who operate both Worthing and St Richard’s as well as the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton, are among 30 organisations to benefit.