New A&E suite opened at Bedford Hospital thanks to charity’s £1m appeal

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Dignitaries, including representatives of Bedford Hospital Charity and Friends and Bedford Charitable Trust opening the new Clifton Ibbett Suite.
Dignitaries, including representatives of Bedford Hospital Charity and Friends and Bedford Charitable Trust opening the new Clifton Ibbett Suite.

A new suite, home to a brand new CT scanner and other image processing equipment has been opened at Bedford Hospital’s A&E department thanks to Bedford Hospital Charity and Friends’ (BHC&F) £1m for Bedford A&E appeal.

The Clifton Ibbett Suite was officially opened last month (26 September). However, it has been in use by patients being treated in A&E for some time, helping to diagnose injuries and illnesses far more quickly.

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This helps to reduce waiting times and also means patients don’t have to move to other parts of the hospital for assessment.

The hospital says there has already been excellent feedback on how much time is being saved in making decisions about patient diagnosis and treatment, plus enthusiasm about the quality and swiftness of the procedures.

The new CT Scanner in the Clifton Ibbett Suite at Bedford Hospital's A&E ward.
The new CT Scanner in the Clifton Ibbett Suite at Bedford Hospital’s A&E ward.

The suite has been named the Clifton Ibbett Suite in memory of Clifton Ibbett who founded the Bedfordshire Charitable Trust (BCT), whose trustees donated £800,000 to the appeal.

Shortly after Mr Ibbett passed away in May 2021, Deborah Inskip, Chairman of BHC&F, was invited to meet the trustees of the BCT to discuss support for a CT scanner as part of the charity’s £1m for Bedford A&E appeal and as a permanent recognition of his life.

After meeting with A&E specialists and senior executives of the Bedfordshire Hospitals Trust, the trustees of BCT made the decision to donate £800,000 to BHC&F’s appeal, which underpinned other donations from across the local area.

As well as a new CT scanner, the appeal also paid for rooms to be repainted, and a new mural to be painted in the children’s area of A&E.

The new children's area mural in the A&E ward at Bedford Hospital.
The new children’s area mural in the A&E ward at Bedford Hospital.

“We have received amazing support from the local community and, indeed, both local and national charitable organisations,” said Deborah Inskip.

“This gave the team some heart-warming highlights during our £1m for Bedford A&E appeal.

“Especially notable is the wonderfully generous support of £800,000 given by Bedfordshire Charitable Trust to purchase the CT scanner plus fund a number of key improvements and items for the main A&E department.

“This has made such a significant difference to the overall success of the appeal and, therefore, real benefit to Bedford Hospital and the community it serves.”

Speaking at the opening, Peter Ibbett the grandson of Clifton Ibbett said, “The trustees [of Bedfordshire Charitable Trust] made the decision to give this grant in memory of my late grandfather, who was a trustee of a charity since 1964.

“I think he would have just been delighted to know the enormously positive impact of the scanner on the community.

“The trustees hugely appreciate some of the work that’s done here in the hospital by all of the staff, right through from the clinical teams, the clinical professionals, the administrative roles, the facility roles, the whole spectrum, we hugely appreciate it.

“We especially want to thank Bedford Hospital and Bedford Hospital Charity & Friends team for making this happen today, especially Debbie, who’s been our point of contact.

“Also to Tom. Rob, and Joshua, who have been working on the projects in the background, and Nick Whitlock, who’s also been involved in a number of areas. Thank you, everyone.”

 
 
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