PATIENTS will be able to return to a vital hospital unit after a multi-million-pound project is completed.

All trauma services are set to move back into the Trauma Building at the John Radcliffe Hospital by the end of this year – just in time for winter pressures.

The unit was closed to inpatients in 2017 following the tragic Grenfell Tower incident which sparked a national review on cladding on buildings.

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The structural review led to several units being identified by Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust as having cladding on buildings that raised fire safety concerns.

These included the West Wing, The Children’s Hospital, the Churchill Hospital, and the Trauma Building.

The dangerous cladding has now been removed and replaced, and a refurbishment of the Trauma Building is currently underway.

The £4.6 million projects, funded through a combination of Trust Budget and NHS England funds, ensured that vital fire safety repairs were made.

The Trauma Building will have a total of 48 beds, complete with a patient gym, offices, stores, and a staff welfare floor.

Outpatients were temporarily relocated to the main John Radcliffe building while the works took place but are due to return to the Trauma Building in September.

Inpatients are expected to return in November if the project is completed on time.

The Trauma Building has also been joined to the new Critical Care Building meaning that in an event of a fire, patients can be moved easily to another part of the hospital.

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Sam Foster, Chief Nursing Officer for Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: "This is really wonderful news for both our patients and our staff.

"We'd like to thank everyone for their patience - this has been a significant overhaul for our services, and we are all incredibly pleased that the trauma services will soon be under one roof.

"It will mean an improved experience for our patients, and our staff will be able to care for them in a purpose-built environment. Also, the trauma staff are looking forward to working all together in one location again as they will be able to confer more easily and rebuild the tight teamwork and support that they have worked hard to sustain while they were in two locations.

"This, paired with the adjacent new Critical Care Building, allows us to provide the best compassionate care for our patients in the right place, at the right time."

The Critical Care Building is due to open to High Dependency and Intensive Care patients in late autumn 2021.