AT last - the waiting is over. The medical scanner that you helped buy has been installed at Malvern Community Hospital.

Malvern Gazette readers supporting the newspaper's Ease the Pain Campaign raised £60,000 to buy the image intensifier scanner for the Worcester Road hospital.

And it is hoped the first patients will be arriving at pain relief clinics where the scanner will be used within the next few days.

The campaign was launched in April last year after the Friends of Malvern Community Hospital announced their intention of buying the scanner.

And this week, Friends secretary Maureen Williams said she and her colleagues were absolutely delighted it is now ready to use.

She said: "We couldn't have done this without the people of Malvern and the Malvern Gazette. We're absolutely delighted that the scanner is now in place and is ready to be used.

"Dr Mahesh Chaudhari, the consultant who will be running the clinics, is on holiday this week, but I know he's also delighted that we've got it at last."

Debbie Keelor of Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, which runs the community hospital, said: “Having the image intensifier is a positive step to support the patients of Malvern.

"The Friends and the people of Malvern have worked tirelessly in raising the money for the image intensifier. It has brought the community of Malvern together and our thanks must go to them."

Julian Berlet, divisional medical director at Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “We are absolutely delighted that patients in Malvern and the surrounding area will start benefitting from the new image intensifier this month.

“The scanner uses x-rays and produces a live image feed, allowing pain relieving injections to be administered safely and more effectively.

“I would once again like to thank the Friends and the readers of the Malvern Gazette who have worked tirelessly to raise money for this essential piece of equipment.”