By Anna Whittaker, Local Democracy Reporter
New artist’s impressions reveal how Nottingham’s two main hospitals could both look after a mammoth new redevelopment project.
The plans have been described as a “unique and exciting opportunity” to address health inequalities and spark economic regeneration in Nottingham.
The plans are subject to a full public consultation next year and are currently in the early stages of development.
The Government is providing billions of pounds across the country for a series of similar projects. The exact cost of the Nottingham scheme is yet to be decided.
Nottingham University Hospitals Trust (NUH), made up of Queen’s Medical Centre and Nottingham City Hospital, was chosen as one of 40 major hospitals to be funded by the Government to make the changes.
The trust has called the vast building project Tomorrow’s NUH.
The new artist’s impressions show provisional plans for new cancer treatment buildings at City Hospital and Queen’s Medical Centre, as well as an aerial view of QMC.
One of the images shows a new ‘welcome centre’ at QMC, which could incorporate new shops and restaurants as well as staff well-being facilities, changing rooms and showers, education and agile working spaces and a multi-faith centre.
An initial consultation showed ‘broad public support’ for the project, which could see maternity and neonatal services being merged at Queen’s Medical Centre in a new Women’s and Children’s hospital.
But some concerns have been raised over merging maternity services, which are currently rated inadequate by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).
QMC would also be the main site for emergency care, and a new cancer centre is proposed for the area which is currently used for car park one. A helipad is also planned for QMC.
Most elective (planned) operations like hip replacements and cataract surgery, would be delivered at the City Hospital, with some emergency care moving to the QMC. Cancer treatment would continue to be delivered across both sites.
The vision is to turn City Hospital into a “centre of excellence for elective care”.
More details released along with the artist’s impressions also reveal plans for a new multi-storey car park at Queen’s Medical Centre to free up space where car park three is currently situated, for the new hospital for women, children and families.
The hospital trust also confirmed that there were no plans to house fertility services within the hospital for women, children and families after concerns were raised by patients and politicians.
The plans add that City Hospital has developed “rather haphazardly” over time, meaning the site is difficult to navigate.
Tomorrow’s NUH documents, released as part of a meeting this week, state: “At the City Hospital, we would like to create an elective (planned) centre of excellence, bringing together theatres, critical care and inpatient beds in one part of the site.
“Having this dedicated centre, separate from the emergency services at the Queen’s Medical Centre, will make it much less likely that planned operations
would be cancelled at short notice due to demand for beds for emergency care.
“On the other side of the site, we would like to expand and upgrade what is currently Radiotherapy North, extending it to create a new ambulatory Cancer Centre. This would allow us to bring together all the elements of ambulatory
cancer care currently delivered at multiple locations across the site to
one area, providing radiotherapy, chemotherapy and other treatments.”
The Tomorrow’s NUH funding is expected to be released between 2025 and 2030. A public consultation will take place in early 2023.