The much-anticipated new GP surgery for Emsworth is to open its doors to its first patients next Monday (July 26).
Construction works were completed on July 9, and staff at the practice – in future to be called Emsworth Medical Practice - will move this Friday (July 23), and over the weekend of July 24/25 ready for patients the next day. The existing surgery will be closed to patients on the Friday afternoon, from 12 noon.
The new surgery has been built on the site of the former Victoria Cottage Hospital on the other side of the A27, a stone’s throw away from the existing building in North Street.
The £3.5m scheme involves a redevelopment of the hospital site with some new build, but internally the building has been transformed to a health setting fit for the 21st century.
The GP partners at Emsworth worked closely with NHS Hampshire, Southampton and the Isle of Wight Clinical Group, NHS Property Services, other partners - particularly the community - to select the site for the replacement surgery.
The local LIFT Company, Hampshire LIFT Limited, were appointed to oversee the design and construction of the project on behalf of the CCG and the GPs, with NHS Property Services acting as landlord.
Contractors Mountjoy started on-site in January 2020 for what was then anticipated to be a 12 month construction period, however with the COVID-19 pandemic, the construction programme faced many limiting factors, including a shortage of building materials.
Dr Abu Chinwala, a GP Partner at Emsworth Medical Practice, said: “The big day has nearly arrived and this will be a huge event for us, our patients and all those people in the community who have helped our vision become a reality.
“Our existing site was not purpose-built and has long been out-grown by the community it serves. It is too small and has not enabled us to offer the full range of primary care services that we want to provide. Our new building exceeds our expectations. Our staff love it and I’m sure our patients will too.”
Sara Tiller, Managing Director for South East Hampshire for the Hampshire, Southampton and Isle of Wight Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We are thrilled that what has been a long story has such a great ending.
“There are so many people we need to thank for making this happen from the builders to NHS England, who provided the funding. But mainly our thanks must go to the Emsworth community, which has been involved every step of the way in realising the ambition to build a super 21st century health facility on their doorstep.”
The scheme has been funded by NHS England through an Estates, Technology and Transformation fund grant. It included demolishing single-storey outbuildings, providing a new rear single-storey extension to the main building, installing a new lift shaft, roofing and canopy construction, complete reconfiguration of g rooms, and extensive internal and external decorations.