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Mobile operating theatre to push through Orkney surgery delays

A new mobile operating theatre is to enable almost 350 elective surgeries to go ahead for Orkney and Shetland patients.

This announcement comes from the Scottish Government which is ploughing a £2.3 million investment into the venture.

The specialist unit has opened at Gilbert Bain Hospital in Shetland and will allow cataract and orthopaedic joint operations to go ahead for patients who have faced delays in receiving treatment due to the pandemic and may have otherwise had to travel to the mainland for their procedure.

A mobile MRI unit has also been used to enable patients to have all appropriate scans undertaken prior to surgery in the additional theatre capacity.

The unit, which will remain on site until June 2022, will also support theatre activity from April during the second phase of essential building works in the main hospital building.

Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “I am pleased we have been able to support the mobile unit in Shetland to provide additional theatre and MRI capacity to give island patients essential access to treatment closer to home.

“As NHS Scotland continues to deal with the challenges of COVID-19 this is a great example of innovation and dedication to the delivery of care.”