24 September 2018
The newest hospital in the NHS, equipped for the digital age, is now open to patients.
The £200 million redevelopment of Chase Farm Hospital in Enfield has been achieved in a timeframe unprecedented for a new hospital – going from the drawing board to opening in just four years.
The new hospital has a variety of out-patient services, including an urgent care centre and older person’s assessment unit, and it is also now the location for most of the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust’s planned surgery – including hip and knee replacements and general and gynaecological surgery. Chase Farm Hospital will now serve a population of 1.6 million for planned surgery, delivering more than 10,000 operations each year.
The new surgical facilities feature eight state-of-the-art operating theatres, including four ‘barn’ theatres. These open-plan surgical areas have a specialised air canopy over each station to prevent the spread of infection.
Paul Maddox, 42, from Islington, was recovering from a hip replacement operation after suffering from arthritis for many years.
He said: “The new Chase Farm Hospital is a credit to everyone involved. The facilities are of a really high standard and it looks clean and modern. I wasn’t expecting to have my own room, a TV and good food, I’ve actually eaten more than when I’m at home!”
Susan Cooper, 72, from Southgate, was just waiting to go home after having a knee replacement two days previously.
She said: “The hospital is lovely and it’s been wonderful having my own room. It’s also beautifully clean and the staff have been really friendly.”
New and innovative technology, such as self check-in kiosks and clinical staff using mobile devices to access patient information at the touch of a button, place the new hospital as one of the most digitally advanced in the NHS.
Temitayo Adejumo, 62, from Enfield, was attending the urgent care centre. She said: “The new hospital is beautiful, I’m impressed. I came in the new building, asked a member of staff where to go and was signposted straight here. I was looked at almost immediately and now I’m just waiting to see someone about my hand, which I hurt in a fall.”
Natasha Berko, 38, and her eight-year-old daughter, Mollie, from Edgware, had come for an appointment in paediatrics.
“It’s been a brilliant experience. We’ve been in and out in 30 minutes. We parked close, were clearly directed to where we needed to be, saw a nurse immediately and then it was just moments again before we saw the specialist.”
Co-designed by patients, staff and specialist architects – with input from the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, part of the Royal College of Art – accessibility is integral to the build. There is a hospital ‘concierge’ service situated in the main lobby and volunteers will be located around the hospital to help patients and visitors find their way easily around the hospital. Clear signage and zoning has also been incorporated.
In addition to this the hospital will be piloting and using new technologies to improve patient experience and safety. This includes patients having greater control and involvement in their own care through a ‘patient portal’. They will be able to view their medical history, test results and upcoming appointments.
A mobile appointment manager app will be tested to enable patients to check-in and be called to their appointments from their mobile device.
Natalie Forrest, chief executive of Chase Farm Hospital, said: “It’s exciting to welcome patients into our brand new hospital. We are very proud and know it will offer the people of Enfield, as well as the wider population we serve, a brilliant environment to deliver the very best of modern healthcare.”
The new hospital replaces the old Chase Farm Hospital, where some parts of the building were more than 130 years old. The site has been sold and will be redeveloped with houses and schools.