New regional lab to bring together pathology services across West Yorkshire

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (LTHT) has announced the completion of its new “state-of-the-art” regional pathology laboratory, which the trust hopes will help them to “transform diagnostic services and testing right across West Yorkshire”.

The Centre for Laboratory Medicine, expected to become fully operational in autumn 2024, is to house pathology services from LTHT, Mid Yorkshire Teaching NHS Trust and Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust, as part of a wider service transformation. The partnership has been developed through collaboration with the West Yorkshire Association of Acute Trusts, and is intended to support delivery of innovative testing and diagnostics through use of new technologies and advanced equipment.

The aim is to “generate faster results for patients no matter where they live”, with LTHT highlighting other benefits including enabling routine and direct access from fewer sites; creating “better working environments” for staff; making continuity and transfer of care easier across the region; and supporting delivery of net carbon zero through. The building is “digital by design” and is fully mechanically ventilated, featuring heat recovery systems to minimise power and reuse heat.

As one of the key new-build projects under LTH’s Building the Leeds Way Programme, the centre replaces pathology services “delivered from outdated facilities”. As an additional benefit, the repurposing of the previous facility is to form part of a plan to use surplus estate to develop an “innovation village”, expected to deliver “up to 4,000 new jobs, more than 500 new homes and almost £13b in net present value”.

Olorunda Rotimi, consultant cellular pathologist and clinical director for pathology at LTHT, commented: “The Centre for Laboratory Medicine will play a crucial role in helping us all to meet the growing, regional demand for specialist treatment and care. Not only will state-of-the-art equipment and technologies be installed in the new healthcare facilities, but they will also further support professional development for our staff.”

Earlier this year, we covered how LTHT welcomed a new chief executive, and last summer we heard how the trust trialled electric vehicles as part of efforts to reach net zero by 2040.

In wider news from Leeds, in February we highlighted how Leeds Health and Social Care Hub launched with the aim of bringing together local organisations to help improve patient health outcomes