STRUCTURE: Imperial College Healthcare Trust is to sell off huge tracts of land across three of its hospitals to help fund a major revamp of services, according to clinical strategy papers released last week.
Under its preferred plan, more than half of Charing Cross hospital, 45 per cent of St Mary’s and the whole of the nearby Western Eye Hospital will be sold to raise around 40 per cent of its redevelopment costs.
While the trust has not yet put a figure on expected income from the sale, it will require a further £408m from a Treasury approved loan.
This will be considered if the NHS Trust Development Authority approves the business case for the plan.
The proposed land selloff, planned downgrades and the closure of services at Charing Cross has sparked controversy, with protestors attending board meetings to voice their concerns.
Under the plan, Charing Cross will be replaced with a £150m development, described as a “local hospital” which will offer predominately specialist planned care on an outpatient or day case basis.
This will include an elective day case surgery centre.
The future of its accident and emergency department will remain uncertain while it waits for NHS England guidance from the urgent and emergency care review.
Board papers said it would have “an emergency service appropriate for a local hospital”.
The preferred plan would also involve “significant redevelopment and new build on the St Mary’s and Charing Cross sites”.
This would include an expansion of its services, including the installation of a helipad. Charing Cross’ hyper acute stroke unit will be moved to St Mary’s, where the trust’s acute medical and surgical specialities will also be based.
This hospital will become a centre for cancer and complex elective surgery and will host specialties including renal, haematology, cancer and cardiology.
The majority of complex surgery will also take place at Hammersmith.
The strategy notes the “opportunity” to develop a “regional complex kidney cancer service” with the Royal Marsden Hospital Foundation Trust.
It reveals that commercial opportunities were being explored, including the development of specialist clinics “for other providers to offer through their facilities”.
Moorfields Eye Hospital Foundation Trust’s operates a similar model across its satellite sites.
The strategy notes that this plan is “anticipated to be in line with the forthcoming Dalton review”.
Obstetrics will be offered across two sites, with a large unit that can host 6,000 births per year at St Mary’s and a smaller unit at Hammersmith Hospital.
Both sites would offer consultant led and midwife led services
A spokeswoman for the trust said they will be “working closely with local commissioners” to develop a “major engagement programme to involve staff and local communities in shaping the plans further”
The plan is Imperial’s contribution to the wider reshaping of services in north west London, a programme known as Shaping a Healthier Future.