Dorset radiographers to walk Jurassic Coast for charity

Radiographers from Dorset County Hospital are hoping to raise £1,000 for the trust to help open an emergency and critical care department

Published: 12 April 2024 Charity

To help Dorset County Hospital open an emergency and critical care department, three members of the radiology department are undertaking the Jurassic Coast walk for charity.

Lead radiographer Sarah Landeg, service manager Julia Morris, and business manager Molly Irwin will walk the “very hilly” and “currently muddy” Jurassic Coast on 18 May, covering 100 km (62 miles) in a continuous effort in less than 30 hours.

Future demand 

Dorset County Hospital (DCH) is currently facing insufficient capacity in its emergency and critical care unit to meet both current and future demand.

The emergency department was built for around 22,000 attendances per year. In 2021/22, the unit received more than double this capacity, at 50,119.

To meet demand DCH now plans to build a new emergency department and critical unit to “significantly improve” the hospital’s capacity, and transform the experience for patients and families.

Funding has been prioritised by the government’s New Hospital Programme (NHP) for this major development in healthcare provision.

Enhanced facilities and improved patient care

The launch of its £2.5 million capital appeal to enhance patient care and staff welfare is raising funds for enhanced facilities and additional medical equipment to improve patient care.

The charity appeal will provide:

  • Emergency department
  • Dedicated relatives’ room
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Suite
  • Improved staff welfare facilities
  • Uplifting art and design elements
  • Critical Care Unit
  • Paediatric bed space and equipment
  • Relatives’ overnight accommodation
  • Staff rest and quiet areas and overnight accommodation
  • Patient garden
  • Uplifting art and design elements

Dr Suzie Key, clinician at DCH, said: “Over the last few years, the emergency department at Dorset County has had to adapt to many new challenges whilst continuing to provide high quality care to the people of Dorset. These challenges have put into focus the limitations of the existing department which was originally built to provide care for approximately half the number of patients we now see.

“The aim of the New Hospital Programme is to provide a modern emergency department better designed to meet the needs of the local population. The new department aims to give dedicated spaces for children and young people as well as those with mental health needs. It is being designed to reduce crowded waiting areas and provide a calm and pleasant environment for people to be treated in.

“The needs of our population are ever increasing. This amazing new project will enable Dorset County to build a department to meet those needs both now and into the future.”

The appeal will also fund artistically-designed elements in the new unit to create a “sympathetic and healing environment."

Dorset's Jurassic Coast is a world heritage site stretching from Corfe Castle, past Durdle Door, along West Bay’s cliffs, before the finish line at Bridport.

To support DCH’s capital appeal and the radiographers’ walk along the Jurassic Coast, donate here.

(Image: DCH radiographers walking the Jurassic Coast, via Julia Morris)