President of British Association of Plastic Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgeons Visits State of the Art Trauma Unit

16th May 2023
Alastair Brown showing Maniram Ragbir one of the Procedure Rooms

The President of the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons, Maniram Ragbir visited the Regional Plastic Surgery Trauma Unit based at the Ulster Hospital and viewed the state of the art theatre there.

Patients across Northern Ireland attend the Unit for local and general anaesthetic trauma surgery and cancer surgery, with over 90% of hand trauma cases seen, treated and discharged the same day, thereby preventing the need for unnecessary hospital admission. The facility treats around 3000 Plastic Surgery cases per annum, which requires the expertise of the dedicated multidisciplinary team consisting of Plastic Surgeons, Anaesthetists, Nurses, Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists.

Touring the unit, Maniram Ragbir a Consultant Plastic Surgeon from Newcastle Upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust said, “Plastic Surgery plays a vital role in trauma, it is more than Cosmetic Surgery.  Plastic Surgery was born out of conflict and trauma, reconstructing those with war injuries.  BAPRAS is currently assisting those with injuries from the conflict in Ukraine.  Oncology is also a massive part of Plastic Surgery and my work within the NHS has been dealing with the removal of cancers and reconstruction, which plays a crucial role in cancer management and trauma.”

Consultant Plastic Surgeon, Alastair Brown added, “The Ulster Hospital is the Regional Unit for Plastic Surgery in Northern Ireland and is delivered in partnership with the Belfast Trust across two sites.  The Unit treats a range of patients, those with severe injuries, to those with minor injuries.  It is superb to see the President visit the Plastic Surgery Trauma Unit to see the facility and to hear what we are doing within it and also to offer any advice from his work across the United Kingdom.

“The unit also provides a non-trauma service for adults and children across Northern Ireland, treating a range of conditions.  Prior to the Unit opening, patients would have required an extensive stay in hospital, now patients can be seen, treated and discharged in a timely manner in a state of the art unit. With the pressure on hospital beds so significant at the moment, we aim, where possible, to discharge patients on the same day and this facility is paramount to achieving this.”

Highlighting the benefits of the unit, Medical Director, Charlie Martyn explained, “I am immensely proud of the Plastic Surgery Service provided in the Trust and in partnership with the Belfast Trust.  Traditionally, Plastic & Maxillo Facial Surgery was housed at the Ulster Hospital for many years with a fantastic team providing a great service that integrated well with the other surgical teams.

“This service makes a huge difference to the lives of patients. A lot of the trauma surgery we see in the Unit is primarily upper limb injuries and hands which are extremely important to us. The priority is getting patients rehabilitated so that they can return to work quickly This service is hugely important and are delighted to welcome the President, who has taken time out of his busy schedule to visit the Regional Plastic Surgery Trauma Unit and to establish strong links with Northern Ireland.”