St Mary’s health centre on track for winter opening

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WORK to start furnishing a new multi-million pound health centre can now begin as building work has finished.

Contractors BAM handed over the £18.6m St Mary’s Community Health Campus, in Milton, to NHS Portsmouth yesterday.

The primary care trust will now oversee the installation of furniture and equipment in the new facilities.

NHS Portsmouth project director Debbie Tarrant said: ‘The work has been completed to an extremely high standard.

‘I think when patients and service users go inside, they will feel like they are entering a superb new building, rather than a refurbished one.

‘The services that will be using the buildings have already visited and left us tremendous feedback.

‘Hopefully their views will be echoed by the public, who I feel will warmly welcome these new facilities on part of a former hospital site which so many people hold in great affection.’

Work on redeveloping the site was started in 2009.

The scheme received £17.1m from the Department of Health, with NHS Portsmouth providing the other £1.5m.

The majority of work has been done on the former maternity and paediatric blocks – known as blocks A and B.

Major features of the campus include a new Portsmouth Maternity Centre to replace the existing temporary facility; and a new GP-led intermediate care ward for 12 patients.

Block A will feature the new main entrance and reception area, health promotion, a multi-faith room, restaurant, intermediate care day unit, community mental health team, physiotherapy/occupational therapy, genito-urinary medicine, contraception and sexual health services.

The handover was delayed by nine days, but trust officials say they are still on course for the centre to open in December this year.