The Mayor of Barnet, Alison Moore, officially opened the newly refurbished cardiac catheterisation lab at Barnet Hospital last week.

The lab – also known as the cath lab - reopened in September after a six-month refurbishment which saw a raft of new equipment installed, including updated X-ray machines.

The new cath lab service provides a range of procedures for cardiology patients, such as for those who need cardiac rhythm management and the new equipment will allow the team to provide a more efficient service so patients can receive their treatments sooner.

Alison Moore, who is also a trust governor, and the Mayoress Helen Gordon were welcomed by Barnet Hospital chief executive Deborah Sanders, divisional clinical director for cardiovascular Roby Rakhit, Tim Lockie, service lead for cardiology, research and development director for Barnet Hospital and cardiologist, Ameet Bakhai and Joseph Tomson, consultant cardiologists and cardiac rhythm management lead. 

The cath lab provides a range of cardiology treatments including the fitting of pacemakers, which involves accessing blood vessels to reach the heart and implant leads that persistently monitor and pace the heart when slow rhythm problems occur or can shock the heart if dangerous fast rhythms occur with implantable cardiac defibrillators.

The team can also alter the existing electrical system of the heart to remove dangerous rhythms (catheter ablations) or place devices that strengthen heart contractions.

The service is used to provide planned treatments, with many patients being treated as a day case, and treatments to inpatients who need an urgent procedure.

Deborah Sanders said: “We were really pleased to welcome the Mayor and Mayoress to show them some of the wonderful work we are doing for cardiology patients here at Barnet Hospital. I’d like to thank all the staff who helped bring about the refurbished cath lab – it means we can continue to provide the very best care to those with heart conditions.”   

Ameet Bakhai said: “We’re really delighted with the new lab and the new facilities. It means that we can provide a much more efficient service to our patients, ensuring they can receive their treatment more promptly.

“It was a pleasure to welcome the Mayor and Mayoress to our cath lab and to speak to her about the pioneering heart function digital pathway work we have and the exciting research we are carrying out here at Barnet in the cath lab and on the wards.

“This has been an amazing meeting for our staff also – that they feel appreciated for all their hard work!”

Image: The Mayor of Barnet opens the new catheterisation lab at Barnet Hospital