Cllr Linda Chambers described it as an 'exciting project' . Credit: HCC

Hull plots £18m health hub

Government funding has been secured to develop a community diagnostics centre earmarked for Albion Square, to be rubber-stamped by council next week.

The NHS has secured £16m from the Department of Health and Social Care to develop a CDC in Hull, £12m of which will go towards construction of the facility, with the remaining amount allocated for clinical equipment such as MRI scanners and x-ray machines.

If proposals are approved by Hull City Council’s cabinet on 18 December, the local authority will contribute £2m of funding from the existing Albion Square capital budget to support construction costs.

The design and construction of the CDC would be undertaken by VINCI Building, the council’s development partner for Albion Square, whilst architects for the project would be FaulknerBrowns Architects.

If as expected approval is given to proceed, a planning application will be submitted by HCC and the NHS, with representatives of each currently collaborating and progressing designs.

Construction should begin on site in 2024, with the facility to open in 2025.

The CDC would be accessible for patients, with bus services directly serving the location and the Paragon Interchange just a short walk away, meaning the CDC could accommodate patients from outside of Hull and the East Riding.

Being in a central location, the facility would provide both practical and economic benefits, encouraging additional footfall in the city centre and supporting local businesses and the wider economy.

Cllr Linda Chambers, the council’s portfolio holder for public health, said: “This is an exciting project and one that would bring health, economy and practical benefits.

“Residents often tell us that they want to see a health service that is easily accessible to them.

“Albion Square is a significant development in the city centre and its pleasing to know that such plans are being put in place to accommodate this.”

The CDC would complement the primary objective of the Albion Square redevelopment to create a high-quality mixed-use site and is also key to local NHS ambitions to boost diagnostic capacity in the area.

Erica Daley, NHS Humber and North Yorkshire integrated care board place director for Hull, said: “NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB is delighted to be working with Hull City Council, Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and other partners on this exciting project in the heart of Hull city centre.

“Subject to the necessary planning approvals, the Albion Square Community Diagnostic Centre will mark a revolution in the way patients from Hull and East Riding will be able to access tests, checks and scans and will speed up the detection of many serious illnesses, meaning patients can start treatment and recovery sooner.

“The aim of the CDC is to identify any health problems early and improve outcomes for patients with conditions including cancer, stroke, heart disease and respiratory conditions, as well as reduce waiting times and pressures on acute hospital sites.

“Together with other Community Diagnostic Schemes across Humber and North Yorkshire, this represents an £80m capital investment and – once fully up and running – will mean there’s extra capacity for around 900,000 additional diagnostic procedures a year.”

While construction work is ongoing, the existing Albion Street car park will be partially closed from January 2024.

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