PAH boss reveals present hospital costs £10 million a year to maintain and that he has looked at other options as they wait for cash for hospital…..in 2032

Health / Thu 9th May 2024 at 08:43am

THE MAN in charge of a new hospital for Harlow residents faced questions from Essex County councillors on Wednesday morning.

He once again made reference to when the hospital could open. As we reported yesterday (Wed May 8th) his report stated:

At present it is not possible to give a firmer indication of the timeline for the opening of the new hospital. PAHT is continuing to work in line with the Government’s commitment to have all current New Hospital Programme schemes operational by 2030, however, realistically we believe that 2032 is more achievable.

Director of Strategy and Estates, Michael Meredith made his presentation to the Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee (HOSC) at Chelmsford.

None of the four Harlow councillors (Mike Garnett, Clive Souter, Mike Hardware and Andrew Johnson) who are Essex County Councillors were present nor are there any on the committee.

Mr Meredith made what a presentation that we have become used to over the years. It was detailed and made by a man who is clearly in charge of his brief.

Again, there was a lot of technical terms and phrases as he explained to the committee the state of play.

If there was a “cut to the chase” question, then it was from chair Jeff Henry (Cons) who asked: “It is two years since somebody presented to us. It doesn’t feel much different. What needs to change?

Mr Meredith told the committee that all key partners were “in alignment…the key decision was when we get funding”

Interestingly, Mr Meredith also admitted that while their plan is for a hospital by Junction 7a of the M11, they are “exploring other available sites”.

He did not go into detail but there has been speculation that an option could be moving to the GSK building in The Pinnacles. That was supposed be th new site of Public Health England (now UKHSA) but nine years on from then chancellor, George Osborne’s announcement, nothing seems to be happening.

Mr Meredith’s presentation could be summarised as follows:

  1. The present hospital is at the end of its working life.
  2. They continue to develop other services whilst they wait (Diagnostic Centre in Epping).
  3. They are expecting an update re business programme this month (May). Or the very near future……….
  4. They are exploring any other available sites.
  5. Expect planning application to be submitted in 2025. Building should be completed by 2032.
  6. Maintaining the present Princess Alexandra Hospital is costing £9-10 million a year.

The film of the agenda item is below. It is from the 50 mins mark.

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7 Comments for PAH boss reveals present hospital costs £10 million a year to maintain and that he has looked at other options as they wait for cash for hospital…..in 2032:

2024-05-09 09:02:22

Just clear the car parks into a new or nearby multiple story car park and start building upwards like St George's did in Tooting South London. There's plenty of space on the existing site. Alternatively move into the ex GlaxoSmithKline building at the Pinnacles and you can start building tomorrow. No one wants to have to travel out to the edge of the town into Epping district to the proposed new site, least of all the hundreds of staff who live near the current site. Get on with it and stop wasting time and money, one starts to think that the tory government really doesn't want to make the investment and the whole 40 new hospitals are just a PR trick to garner votes.

Guy Flegman
2024-05-09 11:26:12

End of its useful life. It’s not 100 years old yet. Plenty of hospitals in the country that are older than this. Sounds more like it’s been allowed to get in a state of disrepair so it looks better to replace.

2024-05-09 12:05:28

Cut out the huge mounts of fraud that go on in the NHS everyday.....And guess what plenty of money left......

2024-05-09 16:06:41

I agree with all the above and said so at the consultation meeting a few years ago. We are sick of broken promises. We're all suppose to be equal but in this country we're not respected we're treated like idiots. Luckily for us we're NOT the idiots. The idiots are the ones who believe their own lies. Perhaps if they experienced the difficulties we all face with delays in treatment for a health condition or watching a loved one on a trolley in a hospital corridor they might understand. But of course they don't, they get private treatment and if they tell you they don't they're LYING! The difference/divide is they get paid in gold to not do a job and we get paid pennies to work damn hard. I'm not proud to be British, I'm embarrassed.

David Forman
2024-05-09 19:08:51

It is worth revisiting a YourHarlow article from November last year on the new hospital. PAH Director Michael Meredith's comment: "We are at the moment estimating a new hospital towards the end of 2030." Gareth Davies, the head of the National Audit Office said: “There are some important lessons to be drawn for major programmes from the experience of the New Hospital Programme so far. These include strengthening the business case process to improve confidence on affordability and delivery dates, and improving transparency for key decisions.” See article at: https://www.yourharlow.com/2023/11/24/now-bosses-admit-that-new-hospital-for-harlow-may-not-open-until-after-2030/?_gl=1*zap0fl*_ga*NTQ5MTA0NzQzLjE3MTUyNjY5NTQ.*_ga_VG46TH43S2*MTcxNTI3NzkyMS4yLjEuMTcxNTI4MDkyNC4wLjAuMA..

2024-05-10 07:33:24

It appears some comments have been removed? Difficult to see what the problem with them was so why? Might be my mistake but the same seems to apply to other articles. Might be an idea when comments are removed to at least leave a note to say 'x' comments removed.

2024-05-10 17:02:46

Nostra. I am not your greatest fan , but I totally agree with every word you printed. Well said .

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