The government has this week given its final approval for the funding of a new surgical centre at Musgrove Park Hospital.
The £87 million state-of-the-art centre will replace the current theatres and critical care unit, which were built during the Second World War as part of a temporary casualty evacuation hospital for the D-Day landings.
The surgical centre will also house a brand new endoscopy suite.
Work has already begun to get the hospital site ready and this is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2021, with the major building work starting shortly after.
The new surgical centre will provide:
- Six endoscopy rooms, patient recovery and clinical support areas
- Eight operating theatres (including two state-of-the-art hybrid operating theatres that can be used for both surgery and interventional radiology), recovery areas and clinical support.
- 22 critical care beds, all specified for level 2 and 3 critical care patients
It will mean patients will be cared for in a more modern and comfortable environment that will have greater capacity.
Dr Daniel Meron, chief medical officer at Somerset NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Musgrove Park Hospital, said the news was a huge boost for people in Somerset.
“We are delighted that funding for the new surgical centre has been fully approved by the government,” he said. “This will be a huge boost to the people of Somerset.
This is an exciting news and the start of our ambitious plans as part of the Musgrove 2030 programme, which will allow us to progress the next stage of the development under the new hospital build programme
The quality of care provided to our patients is something we are very proud of and we want to support people to stay as well as possible and have the right services in place to support them in the community.
We want to support our excellent clinical and non-clinical teams to further improve the outstanding care they provide to our patients and we are very excited at the prospect of being able to care for and treat our patients in state-of-the-art operating theatres and critical care facilities.
Work has already started on the site to clear older buildings ready for the main construction phase and we currently estimate the new centre will be open for patients in 2024.”
Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said:
“I’m delighted to give plans for the new Taunton Surgical Centre the green light.
The new £87 million centre will replace the oldest operating theatres still in use in England with state of the art new theatres and critical care facilities.
This is great news for staff and local residents, who will also benefit from the new Musgrove Park Hospital which we are backing as one of the 40 new hospitals which will be built by 2030.
This is all part of our plan to build back better – by investing in NHS buildings for the long term my ambition is for local people to benefit from world-class NHS facilities for many years to come.”
Rebecca Pow MP said:
“I have worked hard since I was first elected in 2015 to improve the experience and care for patients right across Taunton Deane.
The care offered at Musgrove is excellent but many of the facilities are antiquated and have long been in need of an upgrade. I am therefore delighted with the news that the business case for Musgrove’s new surgical centre has been fully approved by Government.
I led a debate in Parliament in early 2018 before following this up with a petition backed by thousands of local signatures in order to make the strongest possible case for a new centre and after working in partnership with many local and national stakeholders diligently since the outset, I am so pleased that this project has finally come to fruition.
Excitingly, this project is just one part of the plans to upgrade the entire site – with Musgrove one of the hospitals that the Government has put into the new £3billion project to improve and build 40 hospitals across the whole nation.
I’d like to pay particular tribute to the Trust for the great deal of work they’ve done to prepare this scheme for delivery and all those who continue to work hard day and night to provide the best care for patients in the area.”
Anthony Irving, managing director of Kier Regional Building Western & Wales, said:
“We are delighted the green light has been given to construct the new surgical centre at Musgrove Park. Over the past two years, we have worked collaboratively with Somerset NHS Foundation Trust to develop this scheme that will provide first-class facilities.
We will utilise our vast experience within the healthcare sector to deliver both the surgical centre and the acute assessment hub at Musgrove that will support the trust in providing important services for the people of Somerset.”
Nick Fairham, principal at architecture practice BDP, who has been carrying out design work for the Musgrove 2030 modernisation programme since it began including the hospital’s Jubilee Building which opened in 2014, said:
“In line with the wider modernisation and transformation of Musgrove Park Hospital, patient, staff and visitor experience is at the heart of the new surgical centre’s design.
This includes everything from creating high dependency and recovery space immediately adjacent to the theatres so that patients remain within the care of their specialist team after their surgery, to maximising opportunity for daylight and views of the gardens.
The centre will be connected to both the Concourse and Jubilee buildings by glazed links overlooking landscaped and planted courtyards helping patients to move from one area to another, enabling easy access for visitors and improving efficiency for staff.”
The surgical centre is just one part of Musgrove 2030 – an ambitious programme to transform the hospital’s facilities. As part of this the hospital will be rebuilt as part of the 40 new hospitals which the Government is backing to deliver by 2030 – the biggest hospital building programme in a generation
A separate £11.5 million development is also taking place to move the hospital’s acute assessment unit closer to the hospital’s emergency department which will mean faster access to consultants and surgeons and quicker assessments for patients who may require emergency surgery. This is expected to be complete in early 2022.
Work to construct a new therapies building and a refurbishment of much of the hospital’s maternity unit are also underway.
And the next steps of Musgrove 2030 will include a new maternity and children’s building and further development of the hospital’s cancer and emergency services.
Musgrove Park Hospital was originally built during the Second World War as a temporary casualty evacuation hospital for the D-Day landings and other buildings were added later in the 1940s.
These oldest parts of the hospital still house services such as the critical care unit, caring for the county’s most unwell patients, as well as maternity and children’s services.
The trust aims to phase out these old parts of the hospital and instead develop state-of-the-art buildings that can offer patients modern, individual healthcare based on the most advanced treatments, technology, innovation and research.