Stephen Timms today swapped his briefcase for a sledge hammer to mark the beginning of the £7m redevelopment of the Emergency Department (ED) and Emergency Care Centre (ECC) at Newham University Hospital. The work is being undertaken to ensure the hospital can meet the surge in demand anticipated during the Olympic Games. Mr Timms took a sledge hammer to a wall in the old A&E unit to begin the redevelopment works.
The new development will bring a range of benefits for patients, visitors and staff including: increased capacity, enhanced quality of environment, improved privacy and dignity standards, the creation of an enhanced dedicated paediatric facility and improved patient safety. The hospital has been preparing for the redevelopment since September 2011 and hopes the improvements will ensure long term benefits to Newham residents long after the Olympic Games have finished.
Speaking after his brief foray into demolition work, Mr Timms said: “This redevelopment looks set to ensure Newham University Hospital is well prepared for the rise in demand that the Olympic Games will bring. But importantly, beyond those Games, this will be a very positive redevelopment for hospital patients in the long term. I look forward to visiting – hopefully not as a patient – once the redevelopment is finished!”
Mr Timms also inaugurated the building of the new maternity unit by demolishing wall with the saem sledgehammer. Before being reunited with the sledgehammer he toured the superb new maternity facilities at the hospital, now fully in use.