Bedford’s new £1.5 million renal dialysis unit treats first patients

Patients from Bedfordshire and surrounding areas have started to be treated at a new £1.5 million renal dialysis that the Trust has created with its specialist partner Diaverum UK in Bedford. The new unit, which is on Napier Road in the Elm

Farm Industrial Estate on Bedford’s eastern outskirts close to the new A421 bypass, has 10 dialysis stations – with sufficient capacity to add a further six as and when needed. Now up and running, the new unit is capable of supporting the dialysis needs of around 60 patients at any given time; it also has sufficient capacity in the longer term to dialyse some 90 people. The new Bedford unit also offers local people much shorter travel times compared to existing units in hospitals elsewhere – which for those who dialyse several times a week can become a very important factor in choice
of their renal unit.

 The Trust’s general manager for renal medicine, Bridget Sanders, said:

“The team is delighted that our new renal dialysis unit in Bedford is now treating its first patients. This important new facility is located in a part of the country where people traditionally have had to travel fairly long distances to access such an important life-saving service. Along with our partners at Diaverum UK, we’ve worked very hard to get the new service ready – which is why it’s so pleasing to see it being used.”

Following a formal tendering and procurement process carried out by the East of England Specialised Commissioning Group, which now forms part of the Midlands and East Specialised Commissioning Group, the Trust was asked to create two new satellite renal dialysis units in Bedford and Harlow, Essex. The Trust’s bid was a joint one put forward by its renal dialysis team, working closely with Diaverum UK.

With the Bedford unit now open and the Harlow service on track to be ready by July 2013, the Trust’s nationally recognised renal dialysis service will be providing renal dialysis services in Stevenage, St Albans, Luton, Bedford and Harlow. With the service hub being at the Lister hospital, Stevenage, the service has become one of the largest in Eastern England, if not the country.