Work has started on a new £2.3 million catheter lab at Bradford Royal Infirmary to provide state-of-the-art facilities for patients with heart problems.

The new cardiac unit, where more than 1,000 patients a year are expected to be treated, will be among the most advanced of its kind in the county.

It is being built on part of a former car park next to the hospital’s cardiology unit at Ward 22 and will include a dedicated X-Ray laboratory and day-case unit for cardiac procedures.

The new lab means more patients will be treated in Bradford rather than having to travel to the regional cardiac centre at Leeds General Infirmary.

Doctors will use the new catheter lab to carry out invasive procedures such as angiograms and the insertion of stents, as well as planned and emergency pacemakers.

A further £500,000 will also be spent on the refurbishment and redevelopment of the cardiology ward and unit, bringing the overall cost of the project to £2.8 million.

Dr Steven Lindsay, lead heart clinician for Bradford Teaching Hospitals, said the new lab added weight to an ambition to develop a 24-7 heart attack intervention service in Bradford.

“It ensures that Bradford patients will receive their heart procedures within a state-of-the-art facility using the latest innovative equipment that is available on the market today.”

The new cardiac unit will provide innovative coronary imaging equipment which will produce better images with less radiation for patients.

He said the transfer of patients from ward 22 to the old catheter lab was not ideal because it involved transfers to other parts of the hospital and lift journeys that were inconvenient for patients and time-consuming for staff.

He added: “By moving the catheter lab to Ward 22 and increasing our day-case beds during the refurbishment, we will be able to see an additional two patients per session while improving the patient experience at the same time.”

Funding for the new unit has come from the capital fund, which provided £1.8 million, with an additional £540,000 coming from the Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Charitable Fund.

Chairman David Richardson said: “Being diagnosed with heart conditions is one of the toughest things that anyone can face. Having these state-of-the-art facilities next door to CCU is fantastic as it will help expand our services to patients and give them the added reassurance that they will be receiving the best care possible.”