New rapid assessment and treatment unit opens at QEQM Hospital

QEQM;s new rapid assessment and treatment unit is now open (Image WW Martin)

The latest phase of a multi-million-pound expansion of the emergency department at QEQM Hospital in Margate opened to patients this week.

A new rapid assessment and treatment unit opened on Wednesday with 12 large new treatment rooms and dedicated mental health facilities.

(Image WW Martin)

It follows the opening last November of a new children’s emergency department, new treatment areas for adults, new entrance, waiting area and much-needed space for staff to work, learn and rest.

Joanna Williams, head of nursing for urgent and emergency care at QEQM said: “We are proud of the improvements we are making which mean that we can see and treat more patients sooner in much bigger, better and friendlier surroundings.

(Image WW Martin)

“Thank you to the many hospital teams and WW Martin for helping us make these improvements and to our local community for your patience while we transform the emergency department.”

The final phase of the department’s transformation is underway, to create a new resuscitation area, where some of the sickest patients are treated, and a new entrance for patients arriving by ambulance.

(Image WW Martin)

The £30million, three-year project for the departments at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford and the Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother Hospital in Margate has been made possible through capital funding from NHS England.

Find a virtual tour of the new unit here

First phase of multi-million-pound project at QEQM Hospital’s Emergency Department now complete


  1. Are they giving these hospitals the money for the new units in anticipation of removing the A+E departments so they move forward with their plans to create a super hospital in Canterbury?

  2. What is the point in expanding the waiting area when the available hospital beds will not be increased and, from what I could glean from talking to the staff, there is no plan to recruit more personnel. I have had the misfortune to attend A&E with my severely ill husband on four occasions in the last couple of months. Each time, he was left waiting 10-12 hours for the most basic of treatment (the administration of fluids – he was in kidney failure) and on one occasion he was left sitting in a chair for forty-eight hours due to the dearth of beds (add to his kidney problem a recently fitted stoma which kept leaking all over the place with nowhere to change it or clean up putting not only himself but others at risk of infection). The whole experience was beyond upsetting and embarrassing. The staff, the few there was, were to a man/woman nothing but kind and considerate but they were rushed off their feet and stressed to death. I have seen many horrors there of late and have been told of experiences even worse than those experienced by ourselves. Many of the staff expressed their fears over the extra demands that will be made on the already stretched services with the advent of all the new houses in the area. The catchment area is already sizeable. Certainly, a bigger waiting area will help since there is nowhere near enough seating at present with people having to sit on floor and queue all the way out the door. However, unless the hospital capacity, itself, is expanded and many more staff recruited it is pretty pointless and the sub-standard triaging/waiting times will remain the same.

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