Burnley General Hospital in £9m government boost to urgent care

A hospital in Lancashire which lost its accident and emergency (A&E) department in 2007 is to receive £9m to improve urgent care facilities.

The government announced it would fund the upgrading of Burnley General Hospital's urgent care unit.

Health Minister Andrew Lansley said "it demonstrates a commitment to help people of Burnley get access to the best facilities".

Burnley MP Gordon Birtwistle welcomed the investment in the hospital.

Mr Lansley acknowledged that specialist services such as trauma and treatment of heart attacks and strokes would not be provided at the unit.

He also said he could not commit to accident and emergency services returning to Burnley.

'Treat more people'

Liberal Democrat MP Mr Birtwistle, who led a campaign against losing the A&E department, said it was still good news.

"Ninety per cent of the emergency requirements for the people of Burnley will now be carried out in a brand new £9m unit in Burnley," he said.

"It means Burnley is getting an emergency centre back in another name," he said.

"The issue is not about what the unit is called. Instead the issue is about the amount, and quality of services on offer at the hospital."

"With this investment Burnley will be able to treat far more people and discussions are taking place on the extent of services which will be available in the new centre," he added.

Burnley General Hospital is run by the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust.

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