The Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust is one step closer to being able to deliver a new Women and Children’s Hospital for Cornwall after appointing BAM as its Principal Supply Chain Partner, the construction company has announced.
The proposed new building has been designed to bring together the hospital’s maternity, neonatal and paediatric care, obstetrics, and gynaecology services within one facility. It would also become the location for the hospital’s new main entrance, transforming the layout of the current site in Truro.
The programme, which has expanded in scope since its inception, is starting with the demolition of six derelict houses to create the space for a works compound for BAM while major enabling and building works are undertaken over the next six years. Work is also underway to relocate car parking for patients and visitors – another key enabling project.
The Women and Children’s Hospital is part of the Government’s New Hospital Programme, focused on delivering 48 new hospitals across England by 2030 using Modern Methods of Construction, with environmental features throughout to support the NHS’s carbon Net Zero ambitions. Smart digital innovations and enhancements are also planned for the scheme – such as creating sensory and interactive play areas, systems to connect families and carers remotely in the delivery of care, and enhancements to the management of patient call systems to provide a quieter, calmer environment on the wards.
Roberta Fuller, Programme director for the Women and Children’s Hospital, and head of Hospital Reconfiguration at Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust, said of BAM’s appointment: “We are delighted to have appointed BAM as our Principal Supply Chain Partner. This is a really important partnership for the Royal Cornwall Hospital, and we are pleased to be moving forward with the enabling works projects with support from the New Hospital Programme. Our designs for the new Women and Children’s Hospital are based on meeting the needs of our local community in Cornwall, and will transform the hospital site. Bringing services together, along with bigger rooms and better facilities, will improve patient flow, and create spaces in which to provide outstanding care long into the future.”
Graham Kingdon, Construction Director (Western Region), BAM Construct UK added: “What makes a building come to life from the outset is the strength of understanding between all the parties. That is what drives our ability to innovate, find additional sustainability solutions, and add value to the local economy and communities. Our goal is to deliver the new hospital to agreed timescales, solving problems as we go through the intelligent use of technology.”
Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust CEO, Steve Williamson said: “This is an exciting time for RCHT and the people of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. Over the past four years, there has been an immense amount of hard work undertaken behind the scenes, not just here at our hospitals, but also with our partners at NHS England, the Department of Health and Social Care and, more recently, with the New Hospital Programme teams. We’re delighted to see the plans for our Women and Children’s Hospital Programme progress to this stage, and to witness the start of the initial enabling works.”
The Women and Children’s Hospital programme is currently at Outline Business Case stage and, having been through an extensive and comprehensive Technical Assurance Review process, was recommended on 3 February 2023 to go forward to HM Treasury for next stage approval. The outcome of this recommendation is expected in the next few weeks. Enabling works will continue into 2024 and 2025, with the provision of a new Pathology building, and the relocation of Cardiac and Pharmacy services to make way for the new building. The entire programme is anticipated to complete in 2028.