The centre will open in autumn. Credit: via Aver

Work under way on £20m Gateshead CDC

Robertson Construction has started on the conversion of space formerly occupied by House of Fraser at the Metrocentre into a 40,000 sq ft community diagnostic centre.

CDCs are being advanced across the country in a move to reduce hospital visits and provide better chances of early diagnosis.

An £18m centre in Hull, designed by FaulknerBrowns Architects, has just been approved. There is also a CDC under way in Stockton-on-Tees.

In the North East, Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust and Newcastle Hospitals are working in partnership on this exciting project which will create a modern, state-of-the-art environment for patients, carers and staff.

The CDC will provide imaging, respiratory investigations and cardiac investigations with the centre designed to create capacity for these services that are seeing increased referrals.

Funding for the centre was announced earlier this year and once open it will offer 145,000 appointments per year and create 134 jobs.

Trudie Davies, chief executive for Gateshead Health and Sir Jim Mackey, chief executive of Newcastle Hospitals said: “We are delighted to see work progressing on the new community diagnostic centre at Metrocentre. This collaborative effort between Gateshead Health and Newcastle Hospitals signifies our commitment to enhancing healthcare services for our communities.

“The centre will meet the growing demand for diagnostic services that are easy for people to visit, as well as creating many employment opportunities. It will be a great service for the residents of Gateshead and Newcastle.”

Robertson managing director Garry Hope commented: “The new Community Diagnostic Centre is a great example of two NHS Trusts collaborating to meet the needs of the communities they serve through an accessible facility which puts healthcare to the fore.

“Having worked with both Trusts before on the delivery of successful projects, they can be confident that we will deliver a quality facility that everyone can be proud of.”

AtkinsRéali is working alongside Robertson on delivery, with completion due this autumn.

Gavin Prior, Metrocentre centre director, said: “With the fit out works now well underway, this is a landmark moment for Metrocentre, as we introduce a flagship healthcare facility for Gateshead & Newcastle and the North East more widely. It will enrich our offer, increase healthcare accessibility for our catchment and deliver new purpose to visit Metrocentre to the benefit of all our occupiers.

“This showcases our mission to offer visitors and locals what they want and need, as a big step in evolving the diversity of uses at Metrocentre.”

Newcastle Hospitals and Gateshead Health are two of four hospital trusts in the North of England who have signalled their intention to work together as part of the Great North Healthcare Alliance.

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