A SOUTHAMPTON hospital is today unveiling a new hi-tech unit to tackle lung and breathing problems.

Southampton General Hospital opens its £1.5m respiratory high dependency unit today which has been hailed as a major step forward for caring for patients with severe lung and breathing problems.

It gives the unit a purpose-built home at the hospital for the first time in 10 years and will also see 12 new nurses appointed, taking the total up to 33.

The nine-bed unit treats patients with conditions including asthmas, pneumonia, motor neurone disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

It will also have four additional side rooms with en suite bathrooms.