17 September 2015, London

Eltham Community Hospital officially opened

Eltham Community Hospital was officially opened by local MP Mr Clive Efford.

Guests at the offical opening of Eltham Community Hospital including CHP's Nicola Theron (far right)

A decade of community determination and partnership-working between Community Health Partnerships, NHS Commissioners, local residents, service providers and the Royal Borough of Greenwich culminated on Thursday 17 September in the official opening of Eltham Community Hospital by local MP Clive Efford, who has campaigned for a local health facility for many years (pictured below, with Community Health Partnerships Local Area Director, Nicola Theron).

Eltham Community Hospital is a purpose-built NHS community hospital bringing together GPs, nurses and social care under one roof, enabling the delivery of high quality, integrated clinical and community services that meet the needs of people across the borough of Greenwich.

Integrated primary and community care services

The hospital was completed in early 2015 and there has been a phased introduction of services.  The hospital features two GP practices, Eltham Medical Practice and Eltham Palace Surgery, a wide range of primary and community care services, 40 intermediate care beds, out-patient consulting rooms and state-of-the-art ultrasound facilities.

Background to the hospital's development

Nearly ten years ago, Eltham residents expressed their strong support for a new hospital to be built on the site of the old Eltham and Mottingham Cottage Hospital, just off Eltham High Street.

After funding was secured through the LIFT Public Private Partnership programme in 2008, the process of building the hospital involved extensive consultation with Eltham residents, to ensure the hospital reflected local priorities and building work finally began in earnest in early 2014.

Improving access to high quality, integrated care

Speaking at the opening, Nicola Theron, Community Health Partnerships Local Area Director commented: “This state-of-the-art, spacious, modern community hospital is set to play a significant role in improving access to high quality, integrated health and social care services for residents of Eltham and the wider local community. 

"The development demonstrates what can be achieved through partnership working, transforming the way services are delivered and ensuring that we have the right buildings in place to support the delivery of high quality services, now and in the future.”

Celebrating the history of the Community Hospital

The official opening ceremony commemorated the history of Eltham Community Hospital.

The first hospital for the area was Eltham Cottage Hospital which opened in 1880, followed by the opening of the larger Eltham and Mottingham Cottage Hospital in 1898, and 117 years later, there is now the new Eltham Community Hospital.

Commemorative plaque

Dr Nayan Patel, a Clinical Commissioner at NHS Greenwich Clinical Commissioning Group unveiled a plaque in honor of Mr Jack and Ellen Oliver, who were hugely instrumental in the development of  Eltham Cottage Hospital.  The Olivers’ grandson, Mr Trevor Lendon, was on hand for the unveiling.

The Eltham Arts and History Group installed a plaque explaining the links between the two hospitals that have stood on the site of the current new hospital.

Clinical Chair of NHS Greenwich Clinical Commissioning Group Dr Ellen Wright said: “Eltham Community Hospital was built by hard graft, sheer determination, and boundless community support, and the result has definitely been worth it.  With two GP practices, outpatient clinics, physiotherapy, mental health services, ultrasound and blood tests all under one roof, Eltham Community Hospital is truly a beacon for NHS primary care in the modern age."

Meeting the heathcare needs of the local community

Local resident Judy Smith MBE, of South Greenwich Forum, said, “Eltham has changed so much over the years, and one of the best changes is the new hospital.  We not only have better healthcare closer to home, but as a community we have helped ensure the hospital meets our local needs."

Cllr Denise Hyland, Leader of the Royal Borough of Greenwich said, “These outstanding modern facilities have been greatly welcomed by local residents, and the involvement of local community groups has helped to ensure that the services on offer are those which are most relevant to the health needs of the local population.

"A strong partnership between the Royal Borough, community organisations and the NHS is helping to ensure that health services and social care services work more closely together than ever before – something which has been greatly welcomed by local people.

"This greater integration of services is reflected very positively in the mix of services that are now available at the Eltham Community Hospital.”

Eltham Community Hospital is located at Passey Place, Eltham, London SE9 5DQ.

Eltham Community Hospital is playing a significant role in improving access to high quality, integrated health and social care services for residents of Eltham and the wider local community.

Nicola Theron, CHP Local Area Director for London