Closer integration of the multi-faceted health and social care services with the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) is having an impact on healthcare buildings. Our primary care cost model report, written by healthcare specialist Mark Robinson, in collaboration with Marc Levinson of Murphy Philipps Architects, describes how primary care is at the forefront of this challenge and addresses how construction can respond to the current pressures impacting the NHS.
Primary care is considered the front door of the NHS; it is where patients normally receive their first interaction with services such as general practitioners and community pharmacists. This service needs to continually adapt to support the future direction of public healthcare. The primary care setting has expanded to reduce demand on hospital services while improving patient experiences. Current trends include the co-location of non-NHS social care and voluntary services within primary care facilities, addressing the drive to provide more integrated and efficient public estate. In terms of future building size, it is likely that primary care facilities will actually contract in size. GP triage and consultations are increasingly undertaken over the telephone and technological developments are leading to the ever-decreasing size of medical equipment.
The NHS has backed the implementation of an increased level of primary care service through application to capital funds. Alternative funding options include NHS Local Initiative Finance Trusts (LIFT), or private-public partnerships (PPPs) such as Community Health Partnership’s upcoming Project Phoenix, a new PPP model supporting NHS infrastructure, planning and investment to complement LIFT.
Our report covers the main elements of construction including funding, design principles, form, building services, sustainability, lifecycle and fiscal incentives. The accompanying cost model is based on a 2,500m2 three-storey new-build primary care health care centre for GPs, community nurses, midwifery services, social services and support services located in Greater London. External works are not included.
You can read this report in more detail here.