PEOPLE across Hampshire will see improved access to help diagnose life-threatening conditions such as cancer and heart problems faster, according to health chiefs.

Funding has been awarded for the creation of new and expanded community diagnostic centres (CDCs) which will help to reduce how long local people are waiting to access vital tests, scans and checks.

These centres are based within easy reach of their local communities and many services will be open seven days a week.

As previously reported, Andover has received funding for a new CDC at the town’s hospital, which will open its doors in early 2023.

The centre, run by Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, will be created from a £4.7m investment to expand community diagnostic services, reducing the need for local people to travel to Basingstoke or Winchester hospitals for care.

READ MORE: Government approves £5m funding for new diagnostic centre in Andover

The centre will add an MRI to the existing CT scanner, develop an ultrasound hub and offer increased x-ray capacity.

Other centres are set to open at the St Mary’s Community Health Campus in Milton, along with Lymington New Forest Hospital, the Royal South Hants Hospital (RSH) and two smaller hubs at Hythe Hospital and Romsey Community Hospital.

Maggie McIsaac, chief executive of Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Board, said: “This funding for four new local diagnostic centres is fantastic news for patients across Hampshire and Isle of Wight. People can expect to see speedier access to vital tests and scans in more convenient locations often closer to home. This will also lead to faster diagnosis and treatment for patients accessing these services, ensuring people receive the care they need sooner.

“This is part of a wide range of measures we’re putting in place to help ease pressure on our hospitals by ensuring people don’t have to endure long waits for routine checks whilst also offering important training and development opportunities for our staff.”

SEE ALSO: New £5m diagnostic centre for Andover set to open in 2023

Alex Whitfield, chief executive of Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are delighted to be investing millions of pounds into the care and services we provide from Andover War Memorial Hospital.

“The Andover Community Diagnostic Centre will increase our diagnostic services outside of a busy acute hospital setting, allowing us to diagnose and treat patients faster and reduce waiting times. The centre will also help us to better train and support our expert staff to ensure we can deliver the best possible care to our community.

“I know I speak on behalf of the entire team when I say we are incredibly excited for the new centre to open its doors in 2023 and are grateful to our maternity colleagues who have been so flexible in moving their services to allow this development to happen.”