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Green light for major investment in the Island’s NHS

A once-in-a-generation capital investment in our NHS services is about to begin on the Isle of Wight.

Work to improve patient care and outcomes, reduce waiting times and bed occupancy, and transform community mental health provision on the Island will start in November.

Funding for building plans drawn up as part of our Investing in Our Future (IOF) programme has been approved by the Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England.

Nikki Turner, Acting Chief Executive said:

“This is great news for our NHS and our community. Investment on this scale means that we can make a real difference to the way services are provided now and lay strong foundations for the future of health and care on the Isle of Wight.”

Maggie MacIsaac, Chief Executive of Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Board, commented:

“This investment will make a real difference to the care of patients and service users on the Isle of Wight. The local NHS is working ever closer with partners to ensure island residents have access to the best possible care and this funding will be fundamental to supporting this, safeguarding the sustainability of services as we head into winter.”

Health Minister Lord Markham said:

“Improving care for patients is one of our top priorities and this funding will transform NHS services for thousands of local residents on the Isle of Wight.

Creating a new mental health and community hub in Newport and modernising St Mary’s Hospital means patients can benefit from state-of-the-art new facilities and more convenient care closer to home.

This will help us bust the Covid backlogs and speed up treatment and diagnoses times.”

Bob Seely MP said:

“I am delighted to see the money we campaigned for has arrived and building work can start. This will result in improvements in a range of services that will benefit Islanders for years to come. I would like to thank everyone on the Island who worked on this bid, including the former Chief Executive of the IW NHS Trust Maggie Oldham. It was a pleasure to support the project and to make sure Ministers understood its importance to the Island.”

Building work starts in early November on a £23.7m upgrade of St Mary’s Hospital. It will create a new Emergency Care Floor, reconfigure wards, and deliver a new High Dependency Unit to improve the flow of patients through the hospital and improve the patient experience.

A new £6.7m mental health and community hub will be built in Newport bringing health and care services together with the community and voluntary sectors, much closer to people’s homes.

These building projects follow a £10m investment in additional beds at the Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth, ensuring that any Islander who needs inpatient care on the mainland can access it.

Included in the IOF programme is a £12.5m investment in digital infrastructure and technology, currently awaiting regulatory approval. This will further support improvements to patient and staff experience.

Our IOF programme launched following a UK Government announcement of £48m million to improve NHS services through investment in infrastructure. It will bring the total capital investment to the Island’s NHS to £75m over four years.

Pam Fenna, Chairman of our Trust’s Patient Council, said:

“It is fantastic that this funding has been approved and we hope it helps hard-working staff to continue to improve local NHS services. We look forward to hearing more about the detailed plans and working with the Trust to maximise the benefits this investment will bring to the Isle of Wight community.”

We are also set to welcome further investment after the UK Government announced 1 of the 10 new Community Diagnostic Centres (CDC) will be built on the St Mary’s site.

The centre will mean greater access to diagnostic tests for Islanders, reducing waiting times and improving outcomes.