A new £21m emergency department was officially opened at Croydon University Hospital today by the Secretary of State for Health.

The building offers modern, high quality facilities, designed with the help of doctors and nurses to create an ideal care environment for patients.

A third bigger than the previous department, the A&E facility, which partially opened in December 2018, sees about 400 patients a day and another 300 through its three supporting GP hubs in the community.

During his tour of the department Mr Hancock said: “I love the NHS and it is fantastic to see the hard work which dedicated staff at the Trust have put in to make this impressive Emergency Department a reality.

"It has been a pleasure today to meet the people who work tirelessly to make it run – the doctors, nurses, porters, managers, cleaners and many more – and to see first-hand how they are taking the NHS into the future.

"This modern, spacious facility is another step forward in giving the people of Croydon the best possible care, following recent innovations such as its three GP Hubs.

"And we are continuing to support their efforts through the Long Term Plan, which will be backed with an extra £33.9bn a year to help guarantee the future of our health service.”

Your Local Guardian: Mr Hancock posing with an I love Croydon badge

The building is 30 per cent bigger than the previous Emergency Department, with two paediatric waiting areas, one for children under 12 and the other for adolescents, plus an outdoor space.

There are also two mental health liaison rooms, offering privacy to patients who may need specialist care.

Another improvement is in the privacy levels for patients. Patients can now expect to be treated in their own treatment rooms, rather than in a curtained cubicle.