IT'S just seven days and counting before Fermanagh and Tyrone's new acute hospital becomes a fully functioning facility.

And with the countdown well and truly on, excitement surrounding the move on June 21 is growing.

Staff familiarisation training commenced last Wednesday in order to prepare for what lies ahead next week.

And the Western Trust have released vital information for the public ahead of the one day transfer.

Western Trust Deputy Chief Executive, Joe Lusby, says final preparations for the move are now being made.

"We have had a number of very successful public open days this week and are just days away from the opening of the this tremendous new hospital," he said, "The Western Trust is currently making the final preparations for the opening of the new hospital to patients on June 21. Staff are continuing to familiarize themselves with their new working environment as they get ready for the next chapter in the life of health and social care in Fermanagh and Tyrone." The �276 million facility covering 50 acres at the site on the Irvinestown Road will open its doors to the first patients at 8am on June 21.

At the same time, the Erne, which has served the community for almost five decades, will close.

Hailed as "one of Europe's most modern hospitals", the new state of the art acute hospital has been delivered on time and on budget.

All services currently provided at the Erne Hospital will be delivered at the new site.

It is the first hospital in Northern Ireland to offer 100% single occupancy en-suite rooms which, according to the Western Trust, will greatly enhance the patient experience, provide better privacy, protect dignity and assist with infection prevention and control.

The new acute hospital will provide up to 312 in-patient and day case beds.

It will deliver a wide range of services including acute medicine, surgery, older people and pediatric services; day and elective surgery, critical care, accident and emergency services, imaging and diagnostics and consultant-led maternity services.

Also included in the new development is staff and key worker accommodation.

The site has 788 car park spaces across 11 car parking areas. Some of these spaces may be chargeable, but this is to be confirmed in the coming days.

The South West Acute Hospital operates a no smoking policy. No patient, visitor or member of staff is permitted to smoke at the facility.

There will be no admissions to the Erne Hospital after this time.

Anyone requiring urgent medical attention after 8am should go directly to the South West Acute Hospital.

Although the Western Trust's patient move plan and preparation has been designed to ensure minimum disruption to services and facilitate the continuation of high quality care, it anticipates major traffic disruptions along the route of the patient transfer throughout June 21.

The public are being asked to use alternative routes wherever possible.

There will be no access to the Erne Hospital car parks from 5pm on June 20. In exceptional circumstances, visitors will be permitted access to the rear car park.

There will be no access to the new South West Acute Hospital to members of the public until visiting times resume from 7pm to 8.30pm on June 21. This will be restricted to two visitors per patient.

For up-to-date information on the South West Acute Hospital, visit The Western Trust's website or 'like' the Western Trust's Facebook page.