Residents of Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (and beyond) will have noticed the giant crane which is currently in place at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital (RBH) hospital site.
Along with the main hospitals in Poole and Dorchester, the RBH serves residents of both Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole and Dorset Council. The site has a large A&E department as well as numerous specialist facilities.
In addition to this the hospital is placed next to a main A road through the county, the A338, it is adjacent to a large Tesco store and opposite the council run leisure facility, the Littledown .
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There are a series of developments taking place on the site and in order to keep to the hospital plans a large crane has been put in place. So what is the crane doing there and what improvements are taking place in the hospital?
The crane was recently installed at the BEACH Building site currently under construction. In a letter sent to local residents of the area, Debbie Fleming, chief executive of Dorset University Hospitals, confirmed the purpose of the work.
“The project is part of a comprehensive £250million reorganization of NHS services in Dorset. It will see RBH become the main center for urgent care, while Poole Hospital will at the same time become the main planned treatment center in the area.The program will see the construction of The BEACH building (for Births, Emergency care, And, Critical care and child Health), housing a new emergency department, a maternity and pediatric unit and a intensive care.
“Further developments include a purpose-built pathology center offering modern and flexible testing capacity. Construction work is already underway with completion scheduled for 2024.”
The letter goes on to say that the development uses considerate construction crews who will ensure that there is no “undue disturbance, inconvenience or stress to neighbors during the construction period – for example, by minimizing the impact of deliveries, parking and works on any public road as well as ensuring that most work is carried out during working hours.”
What is the BEACH Building?
BEACH stands for Births, Emergency Care, Et, Intensive Care and Child Health
The area covered by the building is 23,000 m2 over six floors, the equivalent of 115 tennis courts
When completed, the BEACH building will contain: a new emergency department, a brand new maternity and pediatric unit, a new intensive care unit with a capacity of up to 30 beds and a purpose-built pathology center
Work on the site began in March 2021.
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