A MAJOR milestone at a multi-million-pound hospital will be ticked off on Monday.

The outpatients department at the East Lothian Community Hospital in Haddington officially opens to patients on Monday.

The new outpatients department is the first stage of the £70 million programme that will see a modern and purpose-built hospital developed on the site of the existing Roodlands Hospital.

The outpatients department at Roodlands has been open throughout the construction period, with the new hospital expected to be fully open by early 2020.

David Small, chief officer, East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership, said: “This is an exciting time for the communities of East Lothian and it marks a significant development in delivering a joined-up health and social care service through the East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership. 

“The new facilities will see an increase in gastroenterology, orthopaedics, urology, ear, nose and throat [procedures] in East Lothian and is introducing new services such as plastics and phototherapy. 

“Having been shaped with the help of our patients, this project will allow our staff to continue to give safe, effective healthcare and rehabilitation.

“Throughout the extensive planning process we listened to what mattered most to people and, with the invaluable input from the community, patients and their families, third sector organisations and staff, we will have [a hospital] we can be proud of.”

The redevelopment of the hospital site is being undertaken in partnership with Hub South East Scotland Ltd, with Morrison Construction appointed as the main contractor.

Jo Elliot, Hub South East’s chair, said: “Hub South East helped drive plans for this redevelopment, so it’s fantastic to be here today as we handover the keys to the new outpatients department, knowing that patients and staff will soon benefit from these modern fit-for-purpose facilities. 

“The East Lothian Community Hospital is our largest project to begin construction, and the biggest Hub deal signed to date in Scotland. 

“It’s encouraging to see it progressing on time and on budget, and we look forward to successfully delivering future phases in partnership with NHS Lothian.”

Outpatients will include x-ray, diabetes, ante-natal, orthopaedics, dermatology, rheumatology, psychology, gynaecology, urology, ENT (ears, nose and throat) and MSK (musculoskeletal). 

The next phase of the new East Lothian Community Hospital will include day care services, social care day services, endoscopy, diagnostics, gyms, therapy kitchens, multifunctional rooms, pharmacy, spiritual services space, staff offices, tribunal suite, on-call rooms, health records library, estates, domestics and catering.

The new community hospital will not include an emergency department, minor injuries unit or acute mental health inpatient beds.