Thousands of more operations will be carried out at the James Paget University Hospital after the green light was given for a £17m new unit to be built there.

The Department of Health and Social Care has agreed funding of £17m for an Orthopaedic Elective Hub at the Gorleston-based hospital.

When completed next summer the Orthopaedic Elective Hub will operate seven days a week and will provide 1,400 extra theatre sessions per year.

It will have two operating theatres, a post-surgery recovery area and four patient bays.

It means there will be enough capacity for not only the hospital’s annual planned orthopaedic operations but also additional cases from across the Norfolk and Waveney healthcare system.

In another health boost, its development will in turn free-up theatre sessions in the hospital’s main hospital theatres complex, resulting in thousands of additional procedures for other surgical specialties including urology, gynaecology, general surgery and ear, nose and throat.

Building work will begin in the autumn, with the hub opening next July.

James Paget chief executive, Jo Segasby, said: “The hub will focus on providing orthopaedic surgery, with its own dedicated staff, to help us reduce the time that people are waiting for their procedures, not just locally but across the Norwich and Waveney system as a whole.

Great Yarmouth Mercury: Jo Segasby, chief executive of the James Paget University Hospital (Image: JPUH)Jo Segasby, chief executive of the James Paget University Hospital (Image: JPUH) (Image: JPUH)

“Its creation underlines our commitment to delivering the best possible service for our patients - and is the latest step along the path of creating modern facilities for our patients here at Gorleston, including a new hospital by 2030.” 

READ MORE: £15m hospital ward opens

The hub will be based on land at the northern end of the James Paget site, which is already home to the £15m Concept Ward, which opened earlier this summer, and a Diagnostic Centre which is in the early stages of construction.

The developments are the first phase in the creation of a new hospital healthcare campus.

Great Yarmouth MP Sir Brandon Lewis welcomed the funding and called it "fantastic news" and a sign of the government's commitment to NHS funding.