New facilities at Crawley Hospital offer better care for patients with muscle, bone and joint problems

The musculoskeletal (MSK) department at Crawley Hospital has been improved so that patients can see a wider range of specialists and have problems diagnosed and treated more quickly and closer to home.

The service treats people with a wide range of muscle, bone and joint conditions, such as arthritis, back pain and sports injuries.

Seven new treatment rooms have been opened and the 16 existing rooms, waiting areas and facilities have been refurbished.

The improvements mean that patients can see a wide range of specialist therapists and doctors and in many cases can receive tests and scans all in one visit. This one-stop-shop reduces the need for repeat visits and means patients can be diagnosed and begin treatment sooner. A new bone density scanner has also been installed in the Crawley clinic meaning patients no longer have to travel to Redhill for these scans, which are often used to diagnose osteoporosis.

The service is provided by the Sussex MSK Partnership which runs all the NHS MSK services across central Sussex. The £2.1m refurbishment of the Crawley clinic is a key part of their plans to radically improve MSK care for all patients with better, quicker care available closer to home. Patients can be referred to the service by their GP.

Heather Burrett from Crawley saw her GP because of severe knee pain that stopped her cycling. She was referred to the Crawley unit in September and had knee replacement surgery in November at East Grinstead. “The Crawley clinic was really convenient and I was able to have all my tests and see the Nurse and Consultant in one visit. We all agreed knee replacement surgery was the best option to get me moving again. Since then I’ve been seeing the Crawley team to manage my recovery. They’ve been great and got me back on my feet in no time.”

Mary McAllister, an Advanced Practitioner in Hip and Knee at the Sussex MSK Partnership, said: “We’re thrilled to have the new facilities up and running. As well as providing a nicer environment for our patients it means that we have a larger team able to offer personalised care for our patients right from the start. We aim to focus on what matters most to each of our patients.”

The department has been designed with dementia-friendly colours and signage, with icons and pictures as well as easy-to-read words and facilities are fully accessible for people with mobility problems.