Plans to build a “super hospital” in Birmingham have been given the go ahead by NHS West Midlands but with 60 fewer beds than originally intended.
The strategic health authority approved revised plans for the hospital, which will be built in Smethwick, but with £100m removed from the original cost of the project.
The revised scheme is now expected to be £370m instead of the original £484m. It also means the hospital will be smaller, at 80,000 square metres rather than 87,000, and the number of acute beds has been cut by 57 and will now total 666.
The hospital, due for completion in 2016, will replace the existing City Hospital in Winson Green, Sandwell General in West Bromwich, and Rowley Regis Community Hospital. City Hospital currently has around 570 beds and Sandwell around 430.
The Department of Health approved the case for the hospital last year but asked to see it again before Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals Trust searches for a private finance initiative partner to build it. It has yet to grant final go ahead.
Trust chair Sue Davis said: “We have bought a third of the land and once we have secured approval from the Department of Health and the Treasury, we can start looking for a partner to build it with, which will keep us on target to open the hospital in 2016.
“The existing hospital buildings are in dire need of replacement.”
It was announced at the end of last month that the hospital will be named the Midland Metropolitan Hospital, following a consultation with NHS staff and the public.
Three other names had been shortlisted: The Birmingham and the Black Country Hospital, Grove Lane Hospital, and James Brindley Hospital.
A trust spokesman said: “The feedback we had from people suggested they liked the name of Midland Metropolitan because it was modern, and it was neither Birmingham nor Sandwell.”