Royal Surrey has completed a million-pound refurbishment of its laboratory services to make it one of the most advanced in the UK.
The laboratory at Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust currently processes an average of 200,000 tissue samples per year for patients across Surrey and Berkshire.
These samples are vital in diagnosing what may be causing a patient’s illness including cancer, diabetes and alzheimer's.
Earlier in the year the Trust commissioned a complete laboratory refurbishment to cope with the sheer volume of samples being sent for testing, modernise the service and create a better working environment for the 60 laboratory team members.
The work, which began in March, will also allow the installation of new state-of-the-art digital scanners over the coming months.
The new scanners will enable the laboratory team to embark on a ground-breaking pathology project where patient tissue samples will be digitised and sent to clinicians anywhere in the world for diagnosis – something that is only done by a small number of other Trusts in the UK.
Louise Stead, Chief Executive of Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust, explained that histopathology is the diagnosis and study of diseases of the tissues, and involves examining tissues and cells under a microscope.
She said: “Histopathology is a vital service for many patients undergoing diagnostic tests, including those who are being investigated or treated for cancer.
“This investment by the Trust will mean that the laboratory team will be able to more effectively streamline their work, process more samples and enable rapid and advanced diagnostic tests.”
James Woodland, Lead Biomedical Scientist at the Trust, said:
“Medical, scientific and technical staff in our department now have a bright and modern facility and state-of-the-art equipment.
“This means that they have the best chance to provide a high quality and timely diagnostic service to all of our patients.”
Berkshire Surrey Pathology Services is a joint venture with Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust, Frimley Heath, Royal Berkshire and Ashford and St Peters Hospitals to deliver pathology services across Surrey and Berkshire Counties.
All histopathology samples for Surrey hospitals within the ‘Berkshire & Surrey Pathology Services’ network are processed at the Royal Surrey site in Guildford.