Barts Health NHS Trust’s £520m plan to redevelop ageing Whipps Cross hospital

Whipps Cross University Hospital in Leytonstone.

Whipps Cross University Hospital in Leytonstone. - Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Barts Health NHS Trust wants to completely overhaul Whipps Cross Hospital, and renovate its ageing buildings and sprawling layout.

The trust is preparing to submit a bid to NHS Improvement to turn the Leytonstone hospital, which serves Wanstead and Woodford, into a health care campus.

At the moment the trust says the layout of the 100-year-old building makes it increasingly hard to move patients around, sometimes while they are in a serious condition.

To transfer someone from A&E to an operating theatre or the critical care ward, the patient has to be taken down the bustling main hospital corridor.

The location of the maternity unit, away from the main building, means pregnant women requiring emergency treatment have to be transported across the site by ambulance.

The review found it would be cheaper to redevelop the site at a cost of £520million, than fix all of the ongoing maintenance issues.

Barts also wants to renovate the A&E department, which is one of the busiest in the country and failed to hit the government’s waiting time targets in December.

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Alwen Williams, the trust’s chief executive, said: “We have a golden opportunity to improve the care and experience of local people.

“At a time when the NHS is looking for new and sustainable ways of providing care, we can lead the way in developing a health and care campus to benefit patients for years to come.”

Barts believes the redevelopment will help push the hospital out of “requires improvement”, which was the Care Quality Commission’s most recent rating.

The plans will now be assessed by NHS Improvement.