New hope for crumbling QEH as bidding opened for eight new hospitals
- Credit: QEH
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King's Lynn is putting itself in the mix as ministers open the selection process for eight new hospitals in England.
The roof of the King's Lynn hospital is currently being held up by 200 props, and campaigners hope the QEH will be one of eight new builds given the go-ahead after a government spending review in November.
In October 2020, the government named 32 hospitals which will form part of the 40 new hospitals and is now calling for NHS trusts to submit their expressions of interest to be one of the final eight hospitals.
And with thousands signing a petition calling for the QEH to be rebuilt, the trust continues to strive towards its long-term ambition to bring a new hospital "fit for the future".
Caroline Shaw, chief executive of the QEH, said: "QEH is doing all it can to position the trust to be one of the further eight hospitals and will put forward its strongest possible application as part of this competitive exercise.
"In the meantime, the trust progresses the development of a Strategic Outline Case (SOC), which is on track for completion by the end of 2021.”
On Tuesday, North West Norfolk MP James Wild raised the case for a new hospital during Department of Health and Social Care questions in the House of Commons.
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Speaking on Wednesday about the selection process launch, Mr Wild said: "Earlier this week in parliament I was again making the compelling case to ministers for QEH to be one of the new hospital schemes that is strongly back by the local community and councils.
"This marks the next phase of the campaign and I will continue working with QEH to develop proposals for a fit-for-purpose hospital based on modern construction methods that meets the needs of patients, staff, and visitors.”
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A new ‘Our NHS Buildings’ website has also launched today. This will be the official home of the government’s major NHS infrastructure projects across the country, including new hospital builds and upgrades.
The EDP's petition to rebuild the QEH has more than 7,780 signatures and can be found at https://tinyurl.com/8j2be9fm.