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Belfast Trust’s new maternity hospital one step closer to welcoming new babies

3rd April 2024

Photo of the new maternity hospital building and signage

Belfast Trust’s new maternity hospital has reached a significant milestone with its handover from building contractors GRAHAM-BAM Healthcare Partnership.

The new maternity hospital is on the Royal Hospital site and has been constructed over five floors. It is designed to provide the highest standards of clinical excellence for new mothers and their babies.

The hospital will have an Admission Unit, Early Pregnancy Department and an Active Birthing Centre which will provide 10 dedicated rooms for mothers who choose midwifery-led care. Also included in the development is a new Neonatal Unit with 45 cots.

A 10 bed ward is also located directly above the theatres to facilitate the care of high risk antenatal and postnatal women.

Babies who need additional clinical support after birth will be cared for by the regional neonatology services team based at the hospital. As the regional referral centre for foetal medicine, investigation, diagnosis and treatment of foetal anomalies, the new hospital will ensure babies who need specialised care will benefit from the new state of the art facilities.

Health Minister Robin Swann said: “I am delighted that the new maternity hospital has been handed over to Belfast Health and Social Care Trust. I recognise that this has been a complex construction project which has encountered delays, however this is very welcome news.

“Having visited the hospital during the construction phase and seen first-hand the state-of-the-art facilities, it is clear that the new unit will help transform maternity services for women and their families.”

Maureen Edwards, Belfast Trust Director of Finance, Estates & Capital Development said: “We are delighted that the handover of the new maternity hospital from contractors GRAHAM-BAM has taken place. This is a significant step in delivering a new modern facility which will provide a high standard of care for our mothers and their new babies. Around 5000 babies are born each year at our hospital and this new facility has been designed to provide a caring environment for every mother as they prepare to welcome their baby into the world.

“None of this was possible without the dedication of our staff across a range of specialities bringing their skill sets together. We are extremely grateful for the work they continue to carry out to ensure we can open the building as soon as possible.

“A series of additional works are required to address some compliance issues where guidance has changed since the building was designed. This also includes work to allow our clinical teams to use the new digital records system, encompass. During clinical commissioning, we will continue to monitor all our life safety & water systems.

“We would like to thank GRAHAM-BAM, our design teams AECOM, Isherwood & Ellis, Tetra Tech International, and our project managers from Health Estates who have worked in partnership with us in delivering the new hospital.”

Peter Reavey, Director at GRAHAM-BAM Healthcare Partnership (GBHP), said: “We are proud to have built this state-of-the-art facility that will revolutionise maternity care in Belfast. This project has been a collaborative effort to deliver modern amenities that will enhance the care for mothers and babies.”

Jason Pearson, Director of Healthcare Architecture UKI, AECOM, said: “We are delighted to witness the completion of this building for the Trust. Our design approach placed the well-being of mothers, babies, and their supporting family members at its heart, positioning this building as a leading maternity care facility across the UK and Ireland.”

Following the handover, Belfast Trust will commence a clinical commissioning process, which is essential in ensuring the seamless and safe transition of service into the new building. This includes ensuring the building is properly equipped, all staff are appropriately trained, and operational plans, policies and procedures are in place supporting new ways of working and models of care.