State of the art surgical robot arrives on site at Alexandra Hospital
Plans to bring state-of-the-art robot assisted surgery to Worcestershire have taken another significant step forward this week with the arrival of the surgical robot on site at the Alexandra Hospital.
The much anticipated and exciting delivery was made on Wednesday afternoon, with engineers working on the construction and installation of the robot at the hospital on Thursday morning.
The delivery of the root follows the upgrade and refurbishment of an operating theatre which included reinforcing the theatre floor to take the weight of the robot as well as upgrading the ventilation system, general refurbishment and redecoration.
Senior clinicians aim to begin providing robotic surgery at the Alexandra later this year with robot-assisted prostate surgery for men with prostate cancer being the first procedure offered.
For those patients who are able to have it, Robotic-assisted Radical Prostatectomy (RARP) can offer equivalent or better outcomes, less pain, shorter stays in hospital and quicker recovery for patients with prostate cancer, which is the most common form of cancer in men.
Currently, any prostate cancer patient from Worcestershire who wants this type of surgery as part of their treatment has to travel out of the county for it. That means around 80 patients a year having to travel away from Worcestershire for their operation.
Mr Stephen Goodyear, the Trust’s Divisional Director for Surgery, said: “After working for many years to bring robot assisted surgery to Worcestershire, to take delivery of the robot on Wednesday was extremely exciting for all colleagues involved and is another very positive step forward which is great news for our patients and our service. As well as offering state of the art care for our patients, this new facility will also help to make our Trust an even more attractive place to work or train for clinical staff from a wide range of roles and specialties including surgeons and theatre practitioners.”
Matthew Hopkins, Chief Executive of Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, says: “This development is a vital part of our plans for the future of our services and our hospitals and a further demonstration of our commitment to providing the best experience of care and outcomes for our patients.”
The robot is a further addition to the range of high quality elective (planned) surgical services already provided at the hospital for patients from across Worcestershire and beyond.
Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs the Alexandra as well as Kidderminster Hospital and Treatment Centre and Worcestershire Royal Hospital, is investing more than £3.5 million in the new service. Thanks to the generosity of local supporters, a fundraising appeal in aid of robotic surgery had already raised around £500,000, before plans for the development were paused during the Covid-19 pandemic.