Skip to main content Skip to footer

North Midlands Hand Centre at County Hospital reaches one thousand patient milestone

One thousand patients requiring life-changing hand surgery have now benefited from shorter waiting times at a dedicated day- case facility at University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust (UHNM). 
The North Midlands Hand Centre at County Hospital provides state-of-the-art treatment whilst reducing the waiting list for hand surgery at UHNM. 
Up to eight operations take place each day at the purpose-built centre at the hospital in Stafford on a range of conditions including carpal tunnel syndrome, cubital tunnel syndrome, trigger finger release, basal thumb arthritis, dupuytren’s, and lumps and bumps of the hand and wrist.

The Hand Centre also treats hand and wrist traumas including fractures and tendons.
Maureen Boyden was the Hand Centre’s one thousandth patient, undergoing a procedure to treat carpal tunnel syndrome in her left hand.
The 72-year-old from Waterhouses said: “The team are fantastic, so nice and welcoming nothing was too much trouble at all. Following my procedure, I was walking out in an hour. 
“I wasn’t nervous at all, I’ve had far worse things done than this, and I’d like to say a big thank you to all the staff.” 
Maureen’s procedure coincided with the first anniversary of the North Midlands Hand Centre, which treats both elective and trauma patients. 
Mr Akshay Malhotra, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon and Clinical Lead for Hand and Wrist Surgery at UHNM said: “It’s been a fantastic year for our hand patients at UHNM, who have seen their waiting times for elective surgery reduce by more than two thirds since the opening of the North Midlands Hand Centre in July 2023. 
“Prior to the Hand Centre opening, nearly 76 per-cent of hand and wrist trauma procedures at UHNM were carried out under general anaesthetic, which brings with it added pressures and risk for both staff and patients. Now 80 per-cent of hand and wrist trauma cases are performed under nerve blocks which have shown to offer better postoperative pain relief, quicker recovery, less nausea, and a lower risk of blood clots than a general anaesthetic. 

“This is a sea change in clinical practice which has been carried out safely in a short space of time.”
“To reach one thousand cases in a year is a remarkable achievement, and I would like to thank the whole team including surgical colleagues, anaesthetists, radiologists, theatre staff, recovery team, secretaries and admin, hand therapists, outpatient team and management team at the North Midlands Hand Centre who have worked tirelessly and seamlessly to make this possible.”
As well as a state-of-the-art operating theatre, the Centre also features modern and comfortable changing facilities and a well-equipped recovery room.
Angela Dilworth, Theatre Sister said: “It’s an amazing facility offering first-class treatment and a warm welcome from our skilled and passionate staff. To reach the one thousand patient milestone in such a short period of time means so much to all involved with the Hand Centre. By carrying out procedures endoscopically, we’re able to treat patients as a day case with less pain and quicker recovery time. The fact this is a stand-alone centre also means we no longer have to find beds for our hand patients to recover in in other parts of the hospital, freeing up spaces for other cases.” 
To celebrate its first anniversary, the North Midlands Hand Centre at County Hospital is proud to announce an open day to showcase the Unit to medical staff, students and the public on Saturday 6 July, 9am-1pm. As well has having the chance to tour the Unit, there will also be a range of stalls and exhibits.