Trust’s £100m hospital Government plea for new Wynyard hospital

The University Hospital of Hartlepool
The University Hospital of Hartlepool

HOSPITAL bosses say they are “determined” to make the new hospital at Wynyard a reality after confirming they have asked the Government for £100m to help fund it.

As first revealed by the Mail, bosses at the North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust have held a series of meetings with Government officials, including Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, about the funding arrangements for the new £300m hospital.

Talks were described as “positive” and hospital chiefs have now confirmed the amount they are hoping to secure from public coffers is £100m.

Hospital bosses say they are now looking to submit a revised outline business case to the Department of Health for a part-capital funding and part-privately funded scheme.

They are also still exploring other options to fund the new £300m hospital at Wynyard, including pension funds.

A trust spokeswoman said: “We have had a number of very encouraging meetings with government officials and our regulator.

“The result is that we are just about to submit a revised outline business case to the Department of Health to see if we can get some capital funding, making the scheme a part capital funding, part PF2 scheme.

“While the pension fund solution stacks up in terms of affordability there are technical issues to resolve but it has not been discounted as a way of paying for the scheme.”

Alan Foster, trust chief executive, added: “I am determined to make the hospital a reality because it will secure hospital services in our area for generations to come.

“I have every reason to be optimistic about the progress made to date.”

If funding is secured, the new hospital is set to open to patients in 2017, two years later than planned after public funding for the scheme was suddenly withdrawn when the Coalition government came into power.

That led to the trust looking into a Private Finance Initiative (PFI) arrangement before talks with pension fund companies as the PFI route stalled.

The meeting with Mr Hunt was held two days after members of Hartlepool’s health and wellbeing board, which includes council and health officials, agreed to write letters supporting plans to build the new site.