Our ultra-modern theatres and the skilled staff who work in them

Theatre staff at Benenden Hospital

At our hospital we are proud to have a new modern theatre suite located on the ground floor of the hospital.

Each theatre has its own anaesthetic room – where patients are welcomed before their surgery and receive their planned anaesthetic; a laying -up room - where the surgical equipment is prepared ready for use; and a sluice - where the waste is disposed and specimens are prepared to be sent to the laboratory.

All three of our theatres are laser enabled. We currently use lasers for patients undergoing laser vein surgery for varicose veins and to treat urological conditions.

Two out of three of our theatres are also equipped with a system called laminar flow which produces a continuous stream of bacteria-free air into the room. All our hip and knee replacement procedures take place in these ultra-clean theatres. This laminar flow technology helps to reduce the risk of infection. Once patients have had their surgery, they are moved to our spacious eight bay recovery area, where they awake in a quiet and calming environment.

From scrub practitioners to consultants, and anaesthetic/recovery practitioners to anaesthetists, only the most appropriately trained and highly skilled staff work in our theatre department and Ambulatory Care Unit. Our team at our hospital work efficiently together to provide the best possible care to patients undergoing surgery.

Annette Eva, Theatre Manager, has worked at our hospital for nearly 30 years. Here, she tells us what makes working in our operating theatres so special- “There is never a dull day when you work in theatre. You have to always be thinking ahead ready to adapt quickly to any situation, be highly organised, but most of all, be solution focused. Our staff enjoy working a shift pattern of long days because they can get really involved as a team and it means that they have more days off during the week.”

“I cannot speak more highly about the opportunities for additional training courses I have been given to enhance my knowledge and practice. At our hospital, we also have really good relationships with other theatre departments in local independent hospitals in the area and we all support each other.”

70-80% of the surgery at our hospital is classed as day case surgery. In the past, patients undergoing operations such as hernia or gallbladder surgery might have stayed in hospital for one to two weeks but with the incredible advancements in healthcare these same patients can be admitted and discharged on the same day.

Our Ambulatory Care Unit (ACU) is a purpose-built suite with one procedure room and one endoscopy room. The procedure room is used for surgery that can be done under local anaesthetic such as laser varicose veins, hand surgery including carpal tunnel and some back injections. Our endoscopy service is JAG (Joint Advisory Group) accredited and is equipped with the highest quality equipment for performing procedures including gastroscopy, sigmoidoscopy and colonoscopy. The patient journey is completed by patients moving into either the male or female recovery area. There are times when we need to give upsetting news to a patient and there is a private consulting room so privacy is always respected.

Patients are at the heart of everything we do, but our ACSA accredited and CQC rated Outstanding hospital also ensures we provide excellent support facilities for staff such as appropriate office space. For staff to take care of themselves while at work, the hospital boasts a large staff rest room, male and female staff changing rooms and shower facilities and restaurant facilities near by.

Our on-site Decontamination Services (DS) team of 14 staff is responsible for the decontamination of reusable medical devices. DS encompasses our purpose-built Sterile Services Department (SSD), which deals with the decontamination of reusable surgical instruments, and our Endoscopy Decontamination Unit (EDU) which deals with the decontamination of reusable flexible endoscopes. At our hospital, we are proud to have our Decontamination Services on-site as it ensures that at all times equipment is available to us and speeds up the process overall.

If you would like to learn more about our theatre department, or if you are interested in joining our caring theatre staff team, learn more about our medical facilities or current vacancies.

Published on 27 August 2021