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Watford General Hospital

An HTM compliant solution delivered in just 4 months

Organisation : West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Application : Healthcare

Product : Ultima

Location : Watford

Requirement :

Watford General Hospital identified a requirement for a ‘surge’ ward to cope with high demand for beds at peak times. Due to unprecedented increases in emergency demand, the existing wards were being put under severe pressure. This new ward would act as a valuable safety valve. The plan was to hire a modular ward building for three years while other changes were undertaken to enable the hospital to cater for greater patient numbers.

Solution :

Kyle McClelland, Associate Director, Strategic Developments at West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust, says: “The timescale for getting this building on site was extremely challenging. We evaluated a number of modular building suppliers and Portakabin was the only one able to promise delivery within the four months we had to complete the building, and to offer the high-quality buildings we required.”

The hospital, in partnership with Portakabin, finalised the specification for a 340m2 18-bed ward building, with two separate wards to achieve samesex compliance and equipped to meet all relevant HTM guidelines. The Ultima modular building featured a central core area where all essential ward services were housed, including a kitchen, clean and dirty utilities, a reception area, kitchen, toilets and showers. Either side of this were two spacious nine-bed wards.

The building was to be located on the car-park, with a link corridor to the main hospital. Being a modular building it required no intrusive groundworks, enabling the car-park to be left intact. Portakabin handled the entire building installation and fit out, including foul drain connections, all reception furniture, special NHS-standard bed-heads, alarm systems, heavy-duty flooring, data communications cabling and climate-control systems.

Kyle adds: “The whole process was greatly simplified because Portakabin could handle every aspect of equipping and fitting out the building, which made it possible to complete the project so quickly. Portakabin had just four months to design, build and hand over the building – and they completed it bang on time.”



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