One step nearer to realising our Estates Strategy
In February 2016, the Trust Board approved our five year Estates Strategy for its main hospital site in Islington, and 30 community locations serving 500,000 people living in the London Boroughs of Islington, Haringey, Barnet, Enfield, Camden and Hackney.
You can find a summary of the Estates Strategy here and the full 2016 – 2021 strategy document here.
We are very pleased to tell you that we have now moved a step closer to delivering our Estates Strategy. Whittington Health Trust Board approved the procurement of a Strategic Estates Partnership (SEP) at the October 2017 Board meeting. Ryhurst has been named as the preferred bidder. A contract will be awarded subject to NHS Improvement approval.
Whittington Health provides vital community, dental and hospital services for people in Haringey and Islington, and beyond. We treat thousands of patients every day and we want to continue to make our estates work well into the future.
We know that the Trust faces challenges. Our buildings are old, some of them are not fit for purpose and others are inefficient, and do not help our staff to develop the services they want to provide to our patients. Our population is growing and we need to develop a vision for our estate that provides care environments that are attractive for our patients and staff; affordable, and environmentally friendly.
We know that some of our estate needs investment and rather than think small we want to develop a plan that could lead to the redevelopment of our whole estate. Developing our estate will help us to provide state of the art facilities in the hospital and develop modern community health facilities that enable you to deliver services to our patients nearer to their homes. Alongside this there is the potential to provide key worker housing that will help us to attract and retain staff.
The Strategic Estates Partnership (SEP) will assist the Trust in realising its redevelopment plans initially by developing a strategic master plan for all of our estate.
We know that staff and local people will want to know more about how the SEP will work and what our plans for the estate are for the future.
A SEP is not a PFI, nor is it like a PFI. A SEP is a joint venture. Once the contract is awarded, Whittington Health will not be passing any of its estates assets to the SEP, and will continue to own its estate. This was an important consideration made by the Board.
In entering the SEP, the Trust will retain control over decision making within the SEP. As the SEP evolves the Trust also retains full control over the selection and appointment of all specialists contracted to advance each development project.
We are working closely with our commissioners, the council and other partners to find an affordable long-term solution that meets the future needs of a local population that is growing and changing. We need to seek the support of our regulators, NHS Improvement, to work up our strategy for how Whittington Health might look in the future. If they are satisfied with the way the work is developing, we will then need to draw up individual business cases with more detailed ideas, and these will need to be approved by all of the organisations involved.
We are committed to talking with the whole community about what they would like to see and have already held community engagement events. As we start work on developing the estates master plan we will be seeking further community involvement, and will make sure there are lots of opportunities for local people to help shape the plans. If you would like to join our Community Forum you can do so through the following link on our website.
Siobhan Harrington, Chief Executive of Whittington Health NHS Trust, commented:
“This partnership will assist us to transform our estate. Changes to our estate will be shaped by the local community and staff, to ensure the sustainability of Whittington Health NHS Trust and provide facilities that improve patient and staff experience.
Our priority is to provide the right care, at the right time and in the right place for our patients, in buildings that are fit for purpose and a joy to work in. This transformation will help us to afford not only to improve the environment of care, but to also make the best use of our land and estate assets.
It is very important that we engage with our staff and our community during the process of redeveloping our estate, as we want you to have the opportunity to tell us what you want from our services and the buildings in which they are located. We will be letting you know how you can be involved over the coming months."
We hope that you will find the following FAQs helpful. We will keep these updated as new questions or concerns are raised, to ensure local people and our staff know how we are approaching the redevelopment of our estate.
Additionally, answers to the questions asked by members of the public at the Trust Board meeting on 1 November 2017 can be found here.
Siobhan Harrington, CEO, attended a Defend the Whittington Coalition public meeting on 11 January 2018 at Islington Town Hall. Her comments in relation to the Strategic Estates Partnership and the answers to questions raised there, not already responded to through the FAQs and responses to DWHC at the Trust board on 1 November 2017, can be found here.