Health Secretary visits Queen Mary's Hospital

with Putney MP to see the new building

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Tony Colman MP joined the Rt Hon John Reid MP, Secretary of State for Health, in visiting Queen Mary's Hospital, Roehampton. The hospital is currently being developed under a private finance initiative (PFI). Construction of the 139- bed community hospital began in 2003 under an early works agreement and completion is scheduled for December 2005. The hospital will open to patients in January 2006.

John Reid was one of the first people to tour the four-storey shell of the new hospital. He met with key people involved in the project over lunch, both from the Primary Care Trust, Hospital Staff and the consortium building the new hospital, Catalyst Healthcare.

Services continue at Queen Mary's as usual whilst the new hospital is being built and John Reid and Tony Colman visited the Minor Injuries Treatment Centre which does an excellent job in easing the burden on local Accident and Emergency departments, seeing between 16,500 and 18,000 patients a year.

The Health Secretary inside the MITC with Tony Colman, John Reid, Sarah-Jane Anscomb, Clinical Nurse Manager and Carol Ayres, Emergency Nurse Practitioner.

Commenting on the visit Tony Colman said,

'The Minor Injuries Treatment Centre at Queen Mary's is already doing an amazing job and I would like to extend my thanks on behalf of all the people of Putney, Roehampton and Southfields to Sarah- Jane Anscomb, Clinical Nurse Manager and Carol Ayres, Emergency Nurse Practitioner and the rest of the team at Queen Mary's for all their excellent work.

'It is wonderful to see the new hospital progressing so well and I am very pleased that there will soon be a new major hospital facility in the area. I am also pleased that this is the only new hospital in the UK developed under PFI where staff will not transfer to private employment but will remain under NHS employment, terms and conditions. This is a very positive development and I hope it will be a trailblazer for future PFI NHS initiatives.'

January 12, 2005