Planning permission granted for rehabilitation ‘centre of excellence'
Southampton City Council has granted conditional planning permission for a scheme to create a 50-bed rehabilitation unit for patients across Southampton in a new £19.5 m two-storey wing at Western Community Hospital off the city’s Tebourba Way.
Providing purpose-built rehabilitation space at the heart of the community, the new facility will – Solent NHS Trust says – ‘enable a greater number of people to be cared for in fresh, modern facilities – enhancing the patient experience, and providing an improved working environment for staff’. It will replace two existing rehabilitation wards at the Royal South Hants Hospital in Southampton – increasing beds from 43 to 50, as well as doubling the number of single rooms with en-suite facilities.
Sue Harriman, Chief Executive at Solent NHS Trust, said: “This is a major milestone in our plans to centralise and future-proof our rehabilitation facilities for patients across the Southampton area. We are extremely excited about delivering this project, which will transform existing facilities, and have significant benefits for the wider health system, as well as our local community.”
She added: “While delivery of the project is still subject to final funding approval from the Department of Health and Social Care, this is an important and significant step forward for the project, our patients, and staff.”
Demolition of an existing wing at the Western Community Hospital is expected to start in the spring of 2022 to make space for the new wing, with the scheme taking an estimated 18 months to complete. The Trust says the new unit – which will feature construction and cladding / roofing materials to complement the design of the site’s existing hospital buildings – ‘will help keep even more people safe and well, close to home’.
Clinical staff, patients, and carers, have had input into the plans, which use greenery and natural light to boost morale and aid recovery. The image shows an artist’s impression of the new rehabilitation facility.