Costain Completes Hospital Urgent Care Centre Ahead Of Schedule

7 June 2011

Costain has completed an Urgent Care Centre, incorporating an Emergency Department, at Weston General Hospital, in North Somerset, more than six weeks ahead of schedule - enabling the hospital to treat patients at the new facility earlier than expected.

The facility, which opened to the public on April 13, combines the expertise of a hospital Emergency Department with GPs who specialise in urgent care. Patients arriving at the department are assessed as to whether they need emergency care or have life-threatening conditions, and are then directed to the most appropriate area.

This new way of working has been developed by hospital and GP staff to make sure that patients’ needs are dealt with more quickly.

The Emergency Department treated 50,000 people last year and this is expected to rise by 10 per cent per year. This is the fourth project completed for Weston Area Health NHS Trust under the Pro Cure 21 scheme.

The project totalled 1600 metres squared, with 800 m2 of new build and 800 m2 of refurbishment.

“We had to build a temporary emergency department in eight weeks and move the staff into it prior to taking possession of the site. We’re proud to have completed the works in the middle of a live hospital six weeks early, with no accidents and within budget,” said Paul Smith, the Project Manager on the site.

Paul attributed the success of the project to good daily coordination with the client and a rigorous adherence to the construction programme, as well as a good performance from the supply chain.

“As a live site we were completely surrounded on all sides and above by other departments that continued working 24-hours a day. We minimised any disruption, particularly around noise and dust, so all the life-critical services could continue,” Paul said.

The new Urgent Care Centre is the final project in a series by Costain at Weston General Hospital, which included the refurbishment of an emergency admissions unit, a single-sex ward, the refurbishment of Hutton Ward and a new Magnetic  Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanner facility and extension to the existing X-ray department.

The new X-ray department, also at Weston General Hospital, allows radiographers to perform scans throughout the week.  Prior to the extension, the Trust depended on weekly visits from a mobile service. The building also has an ultra-sound room, stretcher bays and a sub-waiting room for out patients. Patients previously had to wait in corridor facilities and the new room now offers better privacy and dignity.

Commenting on the completion of the Urgent Care Centre project, Weston Area Health NHS Trust Chief Executive, Lorene Read, said: “We are very proud to have opened our new Urgent Care Centre, which was completed on time and on budget.

“It is a state-of-the-art facility offering patients far greater privacy and dignity than our previous, more cramped Emergency Department could do. It was a very exciting project for the Trust and one which we believe has transformed our patients’ experience of accessing urgent care here for the better.”