Menu Picture of three small lines that users click on to reveal a list of links

More from news and media Picture of three small lines which when clicked on activate a menu with links to other pages

Virtual opening for dedicated Orthopaedic centre at St Albans

Posted: 28 October 2020

A corridor within the Orthopaedic centre

The new Orthopaedic centre at St Albans City Hospital has been officially opened in a virtual ceremony by MP for St Albans Daisy Cooper. Strict visiting restrictions currently in place at all hospitals in West Herts meant that Ms Cooper’s opening speech was delivered via video from her own back garden.

The opening of the dedicated centre will be welcome news for residents as it will allow West Herts Hospitals NHS Trust to provide more treatments and services within the department, improving patients’ experience and freeing up capacity in other areas.
Basing all elective outpatient activity for the Trust’s team of 16 consultants at a single hospital will lead to better multidisciplinary team working, and will result in more efficient consultant-led clinics. The centre will cover all orthopaedic subspecialties, such as lower limb, foot and ankle, spine, hand and upper limb.

Access to a desktop x-ray machine means that some groups of patients will be able to have their x-ray at the same time as their face to face appointment freeing up over 14,000 referrals to the radiology department. This will create a huge amount of capacity for the x-ray department, improving efficiency and enhancing the patient experience.

Another new feature is the one-stop hand service which means that day case procedures are performed in the centre’s multi treatment rooms freeing up the hospital’s theatre complex for other operations. Shockwave treatment and ultrasound-guided injections are further examples of new treatments that are now available.

The centre also includes space for ‘schools’ or a large seminar room, to prepare lower limb, spine and upper limb patients for hospital admission. External reviewers have heaped praise on this initiative and the schools have received fantastic feedback from patients.

Mr Simon West, divisional director for Surgery, Anaesthetics and Cancer at West Hertfordshire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has been at the forefront of activity for the past six months, however we have continued to work hard to improve our non-COVID services during this time. The new Orthopaedic centre has allowed access to our services to become as simple and safe as possible for our patients. The improved facilities and increased services now available within the new centre will improve our patients experience and give other departments more capacity.”

Click here to watch the virtual opening video.

Contact information

  1. For more information, please contact the communications team on: email:, For out of hours media enquiries please call the Watford General Hospital switchboard on 01923 244366 and ask for the on call communications manager.
  2. West Hertfordshire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust serves people from across Hertfordshire, north London and further afield. It operates from three hospitals: Watford General, St Albans City and Hemel Hempstead. The trust sees around 600,000 patients a year and is one of the largest employers locally, with around 5,000 staff and volunteers.
  3. For more information about our hospitals, visit You can also join our followers on Twitter ( and find us on Facebook (