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New hospital will treat critically-ill patients from Basingstoke
A PLANNED new hospital will treat tens of thousands of critically-ill patients – including many from the Basingstoke area – each year.
The Gazette has learned that the critical treatment hospital, which should be up and running within the next five years, will be built in an area of land encircled by the M3, A303 and A34.
The hospital, planned by Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, will treat patients in a critical or life-threatening condition. Staff will deal with major trauma injuries, heart attacks, strokes and other emergencies.
A planned cancer centre, previously reported on by The Gazette, offering chemotherapy, radiotherapy, palliative care, core therapies and complementary therapies to patients, will operate on the same site, though the two projects will be funded completely separately.
Although it is not yet known how much the new hospital will cost, the trust is estimating it will be in the region of £70million – the amount a similar hospital planned by Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust is expected to cost.
Mary Edwards, chief executive of HHFT, said trust bosses are looking at a number of different ways of financing the hospital, including through the Foundation Trust Financing Facility – an internal way of borrowing money within the NHS – and other options such as pension funds. It is anticipated the new hospital will be used for around 15 per cent of the half a million patients currently treated at HHFT sites in Basingstoke, Andover and Winchester – equivalent to roughly 75,000 patients each year.
It will have between 200 and 300 beds, around 10 per cent of which will be intensive care beds, and eight theatres, including specialist operating theatres such as a heart theatre and stroke theatre. The hospital will also have diagnostics equipment, such as CT and MRI scanners, working 24 hours a day.
Dr Andrew Bishop, medical director at HHFT and consultant cardiologist, said time will be of the essence for the patients who will be treated at the site.
He said: “Not only do we want to get patients to the hospital as fast as possible, we want to get them treated at the hospital as soon as they get through the doors.”
It is hoped that locating the hospital between the three main roads will ensure the best possible road access, particularly as many of the patients who will be treated at the hospital will have been involved in road accidents.
The hospital will also have a helipad for air ambulances to land and the trust are working closely with the ambulance service and air ambulance charity.
The hospital will be staffed by medics currently working on the Basingstoke, Winchester and Andover sites, including consultants and specialist staff.
Dr Bishop said: “The hospital is not an A&E. It is for people who are in a critical condition. For those other types of injuries, the A&E departments will still be there in Basingstoke and Winchester hospitals.”