Work begins to improve disabled access at Battersea hospital
Wandsworth Primary Care Trust (PCT) have begun improving disabled access at the new St John's Therapy Centre after a campaign group branded it a "disaster area".
The centre in Battersea, completed last year, was found to have disabled toilets too small to fit in a wheelchair.
Wandsworth Access Association inspected the St John's Hill hospital in November. They were concerned the centre, where services from Bolingbrook Hospital are to be relocated, had inadequate facilities for people with disabilities.
Chairman Martyn Ellacot criticised the lack of seating on the ground floor. He said signage in the hospital was not clear enough and a hearing aid system used by doctors to talk to deaf patients was switched off and left unused.
He said: "It's a disaster area in there. I think it's disgraceful they are going to put Bolingbrook in there when it's in the state it's in."
This week a spokeswoman for Wandsworth PCT said: "In response to concerns by the Wandsworth Access Association, two assisted toilets on the ground floor of St John's Therapy Centre are to be converted into a single disabled toilet. This work will take place as part of the conversion of the building to house services transferred from the Bolingbroke Hospital."
She said the induction loop, for communication with deaf patients, was now operational at the reception desk with a sign indicating its location. The signage outside the centre had also been improved as requested.
Mr Ellacot said the PCT had asked him to come to the hospital and do a full audit of the building in two weeks time.
He said: "I'm pleased they are going forward with it but they should have known beforehand. They were cutting corners and it's disabled people who are suffering for it. I just hope there are no other hiccups."