• Guy’s and St Thomas’ Foundation Trust opens new orthopaedic theatre as part of 15-year private management deal
  • Suppliers Johnson & Johnson won contract to manage eight-theatre orthopaedic centre at Guy’s Hospital
  • Trust says it is “working hard” to open remaining seven theatres by 2020

A hospital trust has announced the opening of its privately-managed orthopaedic centre.

Guy’s and St Thomas’ FT this month announced part of its new centre, run by Johnson & Johnson Managed Services – a subsidiary of medical device supplier Johnson & Johnson – had opened.

In 2017, the London teaching hospital trust signed a 15-year, £310m contract to open eight new operating theatres by 2020. One theatre and a recovery suite of four beds has opened on the Guy’s site and a trust spokesman said it was “working hard to open the new facility on time”.

Johnson & Johnson is a significant manufacturer of orthopaedic implants. HSJ understands there had been concerns in some quarters about a supplier having a role in managing an NHS facility.

A spokesman for the £1.5bn-turnover trust said in a statement: “The clinical running of the service will be exactly the same. Johnson & Johnson Managed Services will have no say in a surgeon’s choice of product or brand.

“Our surgeons will continue to have free choice of implants and devices, and J&JMS will procure non J&J products when required.”

In her most recent report to the board, the trust’s chief executive Amanda Pritchard said: “This 15-year partnership will lead to the creation of an Orthopaedic Centre of Excellence and it is great to see this new facility up and running.”

The contract attracted three other bidders. 

The supplier award notice said the winning bidder would “undertake approx 7,000 adult elective orthopaedic cases per annum with target to increase to approx 11,500 per annum over the term of the contract”.

Asked about the funding arrangements for the centre, a trust spokesman said: “The [£310m] figure was based on forward modelling and is subject to a number of variables such as total number of operations and mix of complexity. There is no fixed annual contractual fee per se.

“A significant proportion of [the £310m] covers the costs of consumables, implants and equipment that would have been incurred regardless of the J&JMS investment.”