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News - March 2019

Transforming the future of modern healthcare

Transforming the future of modern healthcare

The transformative design of a new £9m healthcare centre is leading the modernisation of primary healthcare facilities across the UK.

Designed by CPMG Architects, and located on the University of Nottingham’s main campus, The Cripps Health Centre is the UK’s largest GP surgery by patient number.

Commissioned via the university’s construction framework; CPMG was approached to design the ground-breaking centre, with a design strategy that put patient pathways and the end-user experience at its core.

And this has resulted in a building that breaks the mould of a traditional urban healthcare setting.

Anil Parmar, director at CPMG Architects, said: “Having served the university for more than 40 years, the former healthcare premises needed radically updating to meet health sector standards, as well as making room for a new dental practice and pharmacy.

“The new centre needed to provide a holistic approach to health and dental care for the university, the wider community, and its growing patient registration list of 41,000 patients.”

The design team used Building Information Modelling (BIM) to inform decision-making and to secure stakeholder buy-in.

During the pre-construction phase, medical practitioners, students and representatives from the university fed back through design meetings on highly-accurate visualisations of the building and interiors created using BIM and the NHS Activity Database.

This helped to inform key decisions throughout the entire design process as well as supporting high-level co-ordination of the architecture, structures, services, and furniture.

Inspired by home

In stark contrast to a typical urban health centre, Cripps Health Centre was built on a human scale and sits within the green campus.

The 3125sq m building was designed specifically to create a patient-friendly, non-institutional environment.

This has resulted in defined public areas for visitors, with clinical rooms positioned at the rear, benefitting from landscaped views over the heart of the campus and a wellbeing garden.

Separate wings have been created to house the GP and dental accommodation, while the pharmacy sits separately, allowing the optimal circulation of staff, students and visitors.

The new facility enhances the user experience by offering first-class medical facilities and a greater choice of NHS services within its 31 consultantion rooms, one four-bed GP patient observation room, pharmacy, physiotherapy room, GP enhanced procedure room, two GP treatment rooms, nine mental health rooms, one GP seminar room, and eight dental treatment rooms.

These rooms are complemented by waiting areas, WC facilities, training rooms, interview spaces, and administration and storage rooms.

However, it’s the high-quality physical environment which will help to promote health and wellbeing.

By making the environment more relaxing and easy to navigate, feelings of stress and discomfort often experienced in clinical environments are alleviated.

Dr Paul Greatrix, registrar at the University of Nottingham, said: “The new Cripps Health Centre offers an exemplar facility for both our university community and for generations to come.”

Going green

Green in both sustainability and setting, CPMG was tasked with achieving a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating for sustainability.

The green energy philosophy is brought to life through photovoltaic solar panels, a ground-source heating system, and positioning to maximise natural daylight and views onto landscape.

Nick Gregory, a director at CPMG Architects, said: “It is essential for care environments to be patient focused, welcoming and accessible, while remaining private and secure.

“The scale of this project could have made the centre institutional, but it was planned as a series of linked pavilions placed within the landscape.

“The outcome is a truly-holistic, state-of-the art centre which puts health and wellbeing centre stage.

“I’m confident the new generation building will act as a benchmark for future primary healthcare settings.”

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