St John's Hospital, Livingston

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St John's Hospital, Livingston

St John's Hospital is the main general hospital in Livingston, West Lothian, Scotland. Located in the Howden area of the town, it serves Livingston, west Edinburgh, and the wider West Lothian region. St John's is one of three hospitals run by NHS Lothian which have accident and emergency services. St John's has special status as a teaching hospital for the University of Edinburgh Medical School.


Bangour General Hospital, near Dechmont to the north of Livingston, was the main hospital in the West Lothian area from 1939. Bangour had been built as an annexe of the village hospital, which had specialised in psychiatry. The Livingston Development Corporation(LDC), which oversaw the development of the new town of Livingston from 1962, had planned to move the general hospital to Livingston from around 1974. The new hospital was opened in 1989, and Bangour General Hospital was closed in the early 1990s.

Hospital Services

The current facilities at St John's include a recently renovated accident and emergency ward, and a large maternity unit, where around 2,500 babies are born annually. The radiology department uses a trust-wide PACS system, complete with 2 digital screening rooms, spiral CT, 4 ultrasound machines and a gamma camera. St John's contains many specialist services for south east Scotland, including oral and maxillofacial, burns and plastic surgery units. The hospital is being promoted as the main regional centre for elective surgery, and as a centre for minimally invasive surgery. This centre, supported by University of Edinburgh professors, will provide Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) surgery, orthopaedic surgery, and urology. The ENT in patient facility formerly based in Edinburgh has been relocated and amalagamated with the ENT services already located at St John's and serving West lothian, with the intention of merging it with the existing head and neck unit, to form another regional centre. The improvements will see 4,500 patients per year being treated at St Johns.

Hospital Radio

Radio Grapevine is the hospital radio station, which has been broadcast to the main buildings of the hospital since 1991. They have also obtained status as a Scottish registered charity.

Howden Health Centre

Howden Health Centre, is located within the hospital grounds, but predates the hospital by several years. It is a community health centre, and provides a range of health services for the local population. As well as accommodating a large NHS medical practice, there is a Family Planning clinic, Genitourinary Medicine clinic, Community Pharmacy, District Nursing team, and Health Visitor team based in the building.


St John's Hospital is very well linked by public transport in the area, with most buses within Livingston calling at St John's at some point in their route. It has links with Uphall, Broxburn, all parts of Livingston, Pumpherston, Mid Calder, East Calder, Edinburgh, Edinburgh Airport, Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, Ocean Terminal, Linlithgow, Bathgate and more.

It is just a short walk from Livingston North train station, which provides links to Bathgate, Edinburgh, Airdrie, and Glasgow via the recently reopened Airdrie-Bathgate line.

It has a large car park which along with all NHS-run hospitals in Scotland had its parking charges abolished on 31st December 2008.