The Critical Care unit at William Harvey Hospital has been shortlisted for a national hospital building award at this week’s Health Business Awards.

The Hospital Building category recognises new building projects that raise the standard of the healthcare environment and demonstrate value for money and project management excellence.

Funded by £14 million national NHS investment, the outstanding 24-bed critical care unit was built in a former car park next to Richard Stevens ward and opened to patients in April this year.

It contains four separate six-bed treatment areas, each with two isolation rooms, and dedicated areas for family and visitors plus excellent staff facilities on the second floor, including a state-of-the-art simulation suite, dedicated rest, change and work areas.

The build was a major team effort bringing together construction partners MTX and 2gether Support Solutions, architects HMY and Day Architectural, with frontline and support teams throughout the Trust.

Clinical leaders from critical care worked closely with architects on the unit’s design, which was shaped by the team’s experiences and learning during the height of the Covid pandemic.

They continued to work closely with the build teams throughout to ensure the new unit was the very best it could be for patients and staff.

Building work got underway during the pandemic, starting with extensive underground works to relocate cables and drainage before the unit’s foundations and frame could go be built.

Once these were in place, the unit quickly took shape, piecing together pre-made sections that were built off-site using nationally-recognised modern methods of construction, then craned into position.

The unit was opened by a former patient who spent three months in critical care following a life-threatening illness and the hospital’s longest serving nurse, Yvonne Davis, 43 years after her first shift at the hospital on its opening night in 1979.

The Health Business Awards recognise NHS achievements, with awards that recognise patient safety, hospital building, sustainability, telehealth, logistics and healthcare IT, among others.

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