North Manchester General Hospital welcome Prime Minister and Health Secretary visit
On Sunday 29 September, staff at our North Manchester General Hospital welcomed a visit by the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, and Health Secretary, Matt Hancock.
The visit coincided with the announcement that the North Manchester site is one of a number of hospitals that is earmarked to receive millions of pounds in capital funding over the coming years as part of the Government’s Health Infrastructure Plan.
Raj Jain, Chief Executive of the Northern Care Alliance NHS Group which runs NMGH, welcomed the Government’s announcement:
This is great news for our patients and communities that receive care and treatment from this hospital, and for our staff who work here.
“The Prime Minister was taken to ward D6, our head and neck male surgical ward, where he and Mr Hancock were given the opportunity to speak with a number of our staff and with patients.
“This was a really positive visit and an opportunity to get across what a fantastic job our staff do, day in day out, despite the estate conditions and challenges they face.
“It is recognised that significant parts of the NHS estate in Greater Manchester are not fit for modern care standards or able to meet changes in the way services need to be delivered. We all acknowledge that substantial investment is required to redevelop the North Manchester site and also to upgrade parts of The Royal Oldham site and IT infrastructure across all sites.
“While NMGH has seen recent investment in new facilities and infrastructure, notably the £5m Intermediate Care Unit, and £10m being invested in a new energy centre, we know that we are operating from some of the oldest and most challenged hospital estate in the NHS. We have 250 beds and other clinical facilities in buildings and Nightingale wards built nearly 160 years ago.
“Under the circumstances and despite the challenges our staff face working on these wards, they do an incredible job. They continue to provide high quality reliable care with pride and compassion, keeping the hospital clean and safe for patients, with our infection rates reassuringly low. This is reflected in the month on month improvements we are seeing in our quality standards. Staff have worked hard and made significant improvements over the past few years with great leadership; this is now being rewarded by this investment and plans to create certainty and a positive future for the site.
“This funding announced today will be at the cornerstone of the ambitious plans to redevelop the hospital and care facilities on the NMGH site, transforming it into a civic health and care campus. These plans are being worked on jointly between our organisation, Manchester City Council and our Manchester commissioners and Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust.”
Commenting on the visit, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “On Sunday I went to the North Manchester General Hospital and I saw the incredible work they are doing with reconstructive maxillo-facial surgery on people who only a decade ago would have been permanently disfigured by their traumas and for whom hope and confidence is so important. I talked to the patients and every one of them was bursting with praise for the staff and their energy and devotion, but, that fantastic hospital was built in 1876 to serve the workhouse.
"We were walking down long, narrow Nightingale wards that were designed by the pioneer of nursing, and, as one of the managers told me, that asking those professionals to work in that environment is like asking a Premiership footballer to play on a ploughed field. And so I was proud to tell them under this government we will totally rebuild that hospital."
Pictured l-r: Raj Jain, NCA Group Chief Executive, Prime Minister Boris Johnson, NCA Chairman Jim Potter, Sir Mike Deegan, CEO Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT).