The final details have been safely negotiated for the construction of the new Badenoch and Strathspey Community Hospital this summer in Highland. Signed off by the Scottish Government, the plans also include an overhaul of healthcare services in the strath.
“My visit to Skye and Lochalsh today has been an opportunity to find out more about the work underway to deliver the recommendations in Sir Lewis Ritchie’s report on out-of-hours services,” said Health Secretary Jeane Freeman.
“Reading the latest report and hearing from members of the community, the clinicians and other partners has reassured me that NHS Highland are moving in the right direction. I have been particularly impressed with the level of commitment and drive shown by the community and their representatives working with NHS Highland and their partners to develop solutions together.”
The plans are part of a joint £48 million full business case submitted to Scottish Ministers to modernise community and hospital services for two NHS Highland localities – the other area being Skye, Lochalsh and South West Ross.
The Government’s Capital Investment Group has now approved the full business case submission; which means construction of the two community hospitals will begin this summer.
“This investment represents a major step forward for NHS services in both Skye and Badenoch and Strathspey. It supports our efforts to modernise and transform the delivery of healthcare and, in terms of our promise to improve out-of-hours care on Skye, it is very much in line with the recommendations of the Ritchie Report,” said NHS Highland’s chief executive Iain Stewart.
“We are delighted to be able to turn this vision into reality and I would like to recognise the huge contribution made by local communities, staff and partner agencies in reaching this stage. The redesigned services will be more stable, more sustainable and will deliver a better experience for our patients and wider communities,” he added.
£4.6 million will be used to refurbish and retain existing facilities in Grantown, Kingussie, Broadford and Portree. However, both Ian Charles Hospital in Grantown and Kingussie’s St Vincent’s Hospital will close when the new Aviemore hospital opens its doors.