Government agrees to fund Midland Metropolitan Hospital

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Midland Metropolitan Hospital
Midland Metropolitan Hospital © metrogogo

The government has revealed it will provide funding for the completion of building work at Midland Metropolitan Hospital after work stopped following the collapse of original contractor Carillion

Carillion had been the original contractor for the £350m hospital in Smethwick for Sandwell & West Birmingham NHS Trust under a private finance initiative (PFI) deal.  Since Carillion entered into liquidation in January, the trust has been trying to work out how best to get work going again.

When Carillion was awarded the contract in 2015, Midland Metropolitan Hospital was expected to open before the end of 2018. However, the contractor ran into problems and was running approximately a year late when Carillion collapsed.

The Department of Health and Social Care said: “Under the agreement, the government will provide funding for the remainder of the building work at Midland Metropolitan Hospital.

“The new hospital will be built by 2022.”

Procurement for a new contractor will start in November with a winner chosen before next summer.

Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust Chief Executive, Toby Lewis, said: “This is absolutely fantastic news.

“After a huge amount of work by teams across Whitehall and the Trust, and with the voices of local residents, clinicians, and stakeholders having been clearly heard, we are delighted that we now have a definitive, publicly financed plan.

“We will continue to engage with the construction market over coming weeks and build towards a formal procurement by November this year.

“We always said Midland Met would be delivered and the doubters were wrong”

He added: “Midland Met will open in 2022, and by then our partnerships with local GPs, schools and care homes will be even deeper and more integrated than today. This is a vote of confidence in our publicly financed construction plan, and in our Sustainability and Transformation Plan as a whole.

“The new hospital is about improving the outcomes of patient care and about regeneration and public health. We need to finish the job and seize the benefits.”

Lewis said in April that Skanska had been identified as the preferred bidder to take over the project but no start date has been announced yet.

A contract notice was published last week in the Official Journal of the EU for what was defined as an early works contract on the project – “to undertake various protective and dilapidation works designed to protect the site as far as possible until a replacement construction contractor is appointed”.

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