Work starts on new £15m unit at Torbay Hospital

The socially distanced ceremony at Torbay Hospital to mark the start of a new £15million Acute Medicine Unit (AMU).

The socially distanced ceremony at Torbay Hospital to mark the start of a new £15million Acute Medicine Unit (AMU). - Credit: Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust

A socially distanced, ground-breaking ceremony has taken place at Torbay Hospital to mark the official start of construction on a new £15million Acute Medicine Unit (AMU).

Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust runs Torbay Hospital, and its AMU is essential to reduce overcrowding in the emergency department.

The current AMU has 26 assessment spaces for patients, whereas the new facility will see this increase to 52 assessment spaces.

The new unit will ensure that patients receive timely, high quality care, in the right place.

The project will see the hospital receive a modern and fit-for-purpose AMU which will be split over two levels. This will allow for patients with different levels of care to be treated in the most appropriate setting.

Contractors Kier are onsite with the building works anticipated to last for 12 months.

Liz Davenport, chief executive at Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The construction of Torbay Hospital’s new Acute Medicine Unit will transform the delivery of care for both patients and staff.

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"The new facility will help ensure that patients continue to receive a high level of care in the most appropriate setting, and I thank everyone involved in the project that has enabled us to get to this point.

“I look forward to seeing the developments progress over the next 12 months before we begin to see the benefits that this exciting development will bring for our patients, staff and visitors.”

Doug Lloyd, operations director for Kier Regional Building Western and Wales, said: “We were delighted to be joined by members of Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust at the ceremony which celebrated the start of works on this critically important new healthcare facility for Torbay Hospital.

“We have vast experience in delivering healthcare projects in a live hospital environment while maintain the critical ongoing services of the trust and we will utilise our skills, alongside our local supply chain partners, to deliver a new building which provides state-of-the-art amenities to serve the hospital team and the people of Torbay in the future.”

Due to the construction works taking place for the new AMU, there will be temporary changes regarding access to the outpatients department on Level 2. New signage is in place to help direct patients and staff, and volunteer Wayfinders will be on hand to assist with directions. Patient letters have been adjusted to reflect the changes.