Contracts have been exchanged enabling work to begin on an £8m state-of-the-art health hub for patients in west Hull.
The development is being taken forward using the third-party developer approach by health estates specialist, Citycare, and investors Community Health Partnerships (CHP) and Sewell Group, on behalf of NHS Hull Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).
This is the first time this model of delivery has been utilised to deliver health estates transformations in Hull.
The new West Hull Health Hub will replace the dated Springhead Medical Centre, which has operated at full capacity from facilities which are no longer fit for purpose for almost 70 years.
As the current premises do not offer scope for expansion, primary care and clinical activity is restricted and remains limited to GP services, leaving the practice unable to accommodate the anticipated increase in patient numbers in the area and facing major challenges to integrate services.
Citycare’s independent chairman, Alan Johnson, who is also former Health Secretary and Hull West and Hessle MP, wrote to the health authorities to seek funding for a new premises on behalf of Springhead Medical Centre in his role as MP seven years ago after witnessing the challenges the practice faced due to its poor facilities.
In the midst of this terrible COVID-19 crisis, there is at least one piece of good news. Practitioners and patients in this part of Hull will at last have the excellent facilities they deserve
He said: “This was, and still remains, one of the best practices in the city, yet it works from a row of terraced housing which predates the creation of the NHS.
“Clinicians and patients have had to cope with cramped conditions, poor facilities, and the complete absence of parking spaces.
“It has been a long journey with several false starts, but at last a new, modern facility in the far west of the city is turning from dream to reality and we’re really pleased to bring this scheme forward using a new development and finance approach, which has been important in the current economic climate.
“In the midst of this terrible COVID-19 crisis, there is at least one piece of good news. Practitioners and patients in this part of Hull will at last have the excellent facilities they deserve.”
The new two-storey building will have 32 clinical rooms, including GP and nurse consulting rooms, treatment rooms, clinical support spaces, and office accommodation, as well as a reception and waiting area, a wheelchair-accessible lift, baby changing area and buggy parking, a pharmacy, and adjacent car park.
Citycare has already delivered 13 health centres across the city on behalf of NHS Hull Clinical Commissioning Group, including the recent Jean Bishop Integrated Care Centre.
Erica Daley, chief operating officer for NHS Hull Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We are delighted that the new health centre will bring together a broader range of clinicians and substantially increase clinical space.
“This will provide an opportunity to offer a wider range of services which will be very much welcomed by patients in this part of West Hull.”
The new health centre will be part of Modality Partnership’s Hull Division which has a combined total of more than 60,000 patients and four sites across the city.
It has been a long journey with several false starts, but at last a new, modern facility in the far west of the city is turning from dream to reality and we’re really pleased to bring this scheme forward using a new development and finance approach, which has been important in the current economic climate
Dr Elizabeth Dobson, an executive partner at Modality Partnership Hull, said: “The pandemic has highlighted the constraints of the current premises, with the requirements for social distancing to maintain appropriate infection control.
“The clinical rooms are also smaller than recommended and the access for wheelchairs and prams is challenging.
“As primary care transforms to meet the needs of patients, the people and places we need to deliver care have changed.
“Both our staff and our patients will benefit from care being provided in a safe, spacious working environment that will allow us to expand the range of services we offer.”
The health centre will be built by Sewell Construction. The team is expected to start on site in November, with construction likely to take a year to complete.
What is a third-party developer approach?
The developer works alongside the GP practice to bring forward an affordable, deliverable scheme.
Rent, which is reimbursed to the GP practices, is set by the District Valuer based on the size, design and location of the property and on similar transactions elsewhere.
The property is leased directly to the GP practice under either a Tenant Internal Repairing (TIR) or Full Repairing and Insuring (FRI) Lease.
The developer sources the funding for the full development.