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Bright lights of Blackpool beckon

New adult cystic fibrosis (CF) centre opens in Blackpool, expanding capacity and reducing journey times, without compromising excellent care for people with CF in the region.

In June 2014, the Cystic Fibrosis Trust peer review process identified that the adult cystic fibrosis (CF) centre at Wythenshawe, Manchester, had reached full capacity. Lynne O’Grady, Head of Clinical Programmes at the Trust, tells us what’s happened since then.

When we carried out the peer review of Wythenshawe adult CF centre, it was clear that the service was running at full capacity and it would be necessary to implement a strategy for a new adult CF centre in the region. As people with cystic fibrosis are living longer than ever, it wouldn’t have been long before the service became overwhelmed.

A step in the right direction

The Cystic Fibrosis Trust awarded Professor Andrew Jones, a specialist CF physician at the University Hospital Manchester and one of the Cystic Fibrosis Trust’s Trustees, the funding for a clinical fellowship to set up a new adult CF service in the North West. He then arranged training for two new consultants who would provide the service in Blackpool. On Tuesday 9 May I went along to see the opening of this new service, which is closer to home than Wythenshawe for around 120 adults with cystic fibrosis who will be using the new service. 

Dr Tarek SabaDr Tarek Saba (pictured), the CF consultant under the supervision of Professor Jones, has successfully got the centre up and running. The team at Wythenshawe will be supporting the clinical team at the new centre closely for the next 18 months and will have an ongoing relationship with them as the centre develops.

Professor Jones said: “It was wonderful to attend the opening of this new centre. We appreciate the input of the Cystic Fibrosis Trust who provided the training grants for two of the consultants at Blackpool, and also the peer review that highlighted in its key recommendations that Wythenshawe was at full capacity and a new adult centre was required in the region”. 

The new facilities

The centre at Blackpool has an excellent outpatient facility comprising clinic rooms, an office, a reception and waiting area. It will also have first call on two inpatient beds with en suite facilities on an eight-bed, purpose-built, infection-control ward with state-of-the-art ventilation and air-quality facilities. These resources should meet the centre’s needs for the next two or three years and planning for the next phase of development is already underway.

Professor Webb opening the new CF centre in BlackpoolThe grand opening

The centre was opened by Professor Webb. He said: “I am delighted to open this new CF centre, the first totally new adult CF centre in 40 years! Other regions where the centre is at capacity will learn from this example and train up new consultants to provide new CF services.”

Looking forward

This new centre is a great example of how the Trust has worked closely with clinicians to ensure everyone with CF can get the level of care they expect and deserve. Dr Saba said: “I am so pleased that after nine years we finally have a new centre in Blackpool that will provide safe and effective care locally for adults with cystic fibrosis”.