Modular healthcare building wins praise in Parliament

Elite Systems’ COVID-19 Royal Surrey County Hospital project singled out for praise for rapid response to pandemic

The new isolation ward at the Royal Surrey County Hospital was delivered in less than four months

Elite Systems’ recently-completed modular 20-bed isolation ward at the Royal Surrey County Hospital and has won praise for the speed of its response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The new ward was specified in March as part of the hospital’s COVID-19 response and was completed in a timeframe of 14 weeks from initial enquiry to project handover.

And the scheme was praised in the House of Commons by Guildford MP, Angela Richardson, who asked the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock, to join her in congratulating the hospital in its achievement.

Gary Mountjoy, associate director for estates facilities, health safety and major capital projects at the hospital, said: “A solution like this 20-bed ward would typically take two years to deliver so completing it within 14 weeks, as Elite has done, is unheard of within our industry, and this was only possible through the company’s support and its ability to rise to the challenge.”

The Elite team conduced its first site visit within 24 hours of being contacted by the hospital, enabling the trust to progress quickly to the design and build stage of the process.

After collaborating closely with the hospital on the design phase, Elite commenced groundworks on site at the same time as the factory team began constructing the 24 modules that would make up the ward building at the company’s West Yorkshire factory.

The speed of modular construction methods has made it a popular choice for hospital trusts over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic

Utilising this modern method of offsite construction meant that the timeframe for the project was dramatically reduced.

The outer shell of the building, as well as the partitioning and wall linings, were built in the factory, as was the anti-bacterial cladding on the walls of the individual patient isolation rooms, washrooms, and other clinical areas.

Once completed to this stage, Elite transported the modules to Surrey and craned them into position, ready for the internal works to be finished, including mechanical and electrical fit-out and plumbing.

I believe we have demonstrated that bespoke modular construction is an ideal solution for healthcare projects – especially where speed is of the essence

And the new ward was officially handed over less than four months after the first enquiry was made.

Commenting on the project, Elite Systems’ commercial director, Jason Bowker, said: “This project set a new benchmark for us at Elite, and I am very proud of what we have achieved.

“We’re delighted to have been able to support the NHS, and I believe we have demonstrated that bespoke modular construction is an ideal solution for healthcare projects – especially where speed is of the essence.”

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