Eastcott Referrals unveils new ECC unit

Eastcott Referrals has said it is “delighted” to announce the opening of its new Emergency and Critical Care (ECC) service.

Following a half a million pound investment, the centre can now provide “dedicated, around the clock treatment” for serious cases with a newly-assembled team of vets and nurses. 

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Dr David Mackenzie, an advanced practitioner in ECC, planned the opening of the unit since he first joined Eastcott Referrals in 2018. He is now working alongside RVN Harriet Deering, who is the service’s clinical lead.

All ECC staff have received specific intensive care training and are being supported by discipline-specific specialists. It is the only ECC service in the Swindon area where veterinary specialists are on site.  

The unit will be run by three ECC/medicine vets during the day and three ECC vets at night, supported by four day nurses and two night nurses.

Dr Mackenzie said: “The opening of this emergency and critical care service is the fulfilment of a long-standing dream for me. My passion has always been for ECC and I started discussing the development of such a service at Eastcott soon after starting here. 

“We’ve created a purpose-built intensive care unit with all the latest ICU equipment, including our own laboratory; critical care cribs; temperature, humidity and oxygen-controlled intensive care kennels and an ICU ventilator.”

He added: “This means we now have the facilities to care for the most severely injured and critical cases.  We also have a high-quality team of enthusiastic, dedicated ECC vets and nurses to lead the service. Everyone has a background of ECC work and a true passion for it.”

Deering said: “By having all the specialist disciplines available at the practice, we can offer a more holistic service to emergency patients. 

“The ICU also provides a calm environment for critically ill and injured patients to recover following surgery or other planned treatments from other disciplines.”

Managing director, Peter Southerden, added: “We’re delighted to now be able to offer an ECC service to our referring vets.  This is just another step on Eastcott Referral’s journey as we continue to increase the disciplines and capabilities we have.”

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