Latest News

28 May 2005

Equion signs major Newscastle hosptital contract worth £300m

Equion Ltd, a division of John Laing plc, has signed contracts on a major new £300 million PFI development at the Freeman Hospital and Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle.

The project will rationalise acute hospital services within Newcastle from three to two sites, relocating services from Newcastle General Hospital to the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI) and Freeman Hospital. It will ensure a more efficient delivery of clinical services in Newcastle, as well as providing long-term benefits for the Newcastle- upon-Tyne Hospitals NHS Trust.

Funding and management for the project will be provided by Healthcare Support (Newcastle) Limited, a joint venture between Equion Ltd, Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Interserve Plc.

At the Freeman Hospital, Healthcare Support (Newcastle) will design and construct a new renal services centre of over 4,000m2 as well as a new four level cancer centre - the Northern Centre for Cancer Treatment. The RVI site will benefit from a new accident & emergency department, with all the clinical support services required, such as neurosciences, infectious diseases, traumatic orthopaedics and critical care. Additionally, children's services will be integrated into a purpose-built facility adjoining the main development.The project is almost entirely new build, with some limited refurbishment at the RVI.

Construction, which will be carried out by Laing O'Rourke Northern, will begin in May 2005 with the majority of work completed by spring 2010 and an estimated completion date of April 2013 for all works. Groundbreaking enabling works to construct a new 810 space Multi Storey Car Park at the Freeman Hospital site were completed in February 2005, ahead of schedule.

Facilities management of the new facilities will be provided by Interserve FM and will consist of maintenance and ongoing facilities management support for the hospital buildings, with day-to-day responsibility for wards, theatres and cleaning within each hospital being retained by the Trust.

The Newcastle-upon-Tyne Hospitals NHS Trust, one of the largest in England, provides healthcare services to 500,000 Newcastle residents and specialist tertiary services to around three million people in the North East.

Commenting on the hospital development, Gary Lucas, director of Equion commented, "This groundbreaking development will ensure that the North East of England will benefit from first rate hospital services provided in modern, state-of-the-art new buildings.

"We have worked very closely with the Trust to develop a detailed design and the provision of facilities that best meets the Trust's needs now and in the future."

Len Fenwick, chief executive of The Newcastle-upon-Tyne Hospitals NHS Trust added, "This major project will make demonstrable improvements to the health care estate here in the North East. We are particularly pleased to welcome the Northern Centre for Cancer Treatment and hope that this will allow us to make significant steps in reducing deaths from cancer in the area, as well as a new children's hospital and a major trauma accident and emergency centre for our region."

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