A STERILE services department has opened at Yeovil District Hospital following a £3.8m investment. The facility is located next to the operating theatres on Level 5 in a purpose-built unit and will supply operating theatres with sterile instruments, and wards and departments with specific items required for patient care. It will also provide a centralised facility for the cleaning, washing and disinfection of endoscopes. The building consists of three distinct areas - a wash area, packing area and autoclave area - and is the first sterile services unit in the country to receive a BREEAM 'excellent' rating for best practice in sustainable design. Yvonne Thorne, head of nursing responsible for the unit, said: "Keeping our patients safe is our top priority. This investment in the sterile services unit ensures that all our operating equipment is decontaminated to the highest of standards."