A new Minor Injuries Unit is planned at the Victoria Hospital in Wimborne Minister.
Proposed changes will also improve the existing physiotherapy department.
Dorset Council is being asked to approve a planning application to increase the community hospital’s capacity to meet local demand.
Drawings for the single-storey extension show a new building and a reconfiguration of the existing layout to the side of the main 19080s outpatients’ centre, opposite the Victoria Road – Cemetery Road junction.
A planning agent for the hospital says that the small extension should have little or no impact on any adjacent homes.
Existing landscaping and paths, including the Memorial Garden, will be retained with some realigned to run around the perimeter of the proposed extension.
The new Minor Injuries Unit will have a new, dedicated entrance to the south providing direct patient access to the unit.
It has been designed to provide separate adult and children’s waiting space, a multi-bay treatment area, a dedicated children’s treatment room, a triage room and a further treatment room, with a reception and managers office, a utility room, toilets and store rooms.
The hospital says the unit has been designed to provide maximum flexibility in how it can be used with three private treatment/triage rooms available to allow patient privacy and confidentiality. At the same time, a three-bay treatment suite will allow the majority of patients to be seen, triaged and treated within a curtained bay, similar to an Emergency Department minor treatment unit.
Documents with the planning application say the combination of private rooms and treatment bays will provide the opportunity for flexible working and allow the unit to function as an Urgent Treatment Centre should the medical need arise.
The new physiotherapy department will be centred around a large treatment suite that will offer both traditional curtained treatment bays and a small number of private rooms; the existing gym will be remodelled and refurbished, and a multi-purpose hand therapy room created. A new dedicated physio waiting area will be created at the entrance to the department which will reduce pressure on the existing reception and waiting areas.
Said the conclusion of a report to Dorset Council: “The result is a high-quality scheme that achieves an excellent balance of existing and new extension. The scheme has been carefully conceived to maintain a good relationship with neighbouring properties and respect the welfare of protected trees.”
Since its inception in 1887, when it was opened to honour the jubilee of Queen Victoria, the hospital has undergone many changes and has grown to now accommodate 21 in-patients, as well as an operating theatre, endoscopy suite, outpatients’ department, physiotherapy department, minor injuries unit and a radiology department.
Public comments on the proposals remain open until Feb 16 – Dorset Council planning reference 2022/07823.