The completion of a £3m west Hull centre is in sight, meaning members of the local community will be able to access both health and council services under one roof.
The pioneering Calvert Centre is the sixth of seven community centres to be developed by Hull Citycare, in the first tranche of Hull's NHS LIFT plan (Local Improvement Finance Trust), part of the government's national initiative designed to deliver a step change in primary health care.
The new centre, built on the site of a former social club in Calvert Lane, provides fully-equipped surgeries for two GP practices. In addition to this, the building will also act as the base for school nurses and health visitors, as well as a Hull City Council customer service centre including accommodation for the council's West Area Co-ordination Team.
Calvert's completion sees it joining centres which are already operational in Longhill, Holderness Road and Preston Road, all east Hull, as well as Anlaby Road and Alexandra Road, both west Hull.
Representatives from Hull Teaching Primary Care Trust (PCT), Hull City Council and Hull Citycare, as well as the area's councillors and members of the community, came together for a preview event in November, to take a closer look at the centre, before it officially opened to the public in December.
Kath Lavery, chair of Hull Teaching PCT, said: "This remarkable facility is the sixth to open through Hull Citycare in under three years, which is a great achievement for the partnership.
"There was a real need for a facility such as The Calvert Centre in this part of Hull, and now that we have it, the Primary Care Trust will be able to provide healthcare to hundreds of people in much more modern and comfortable surroundings, and this is nothing short of what they deserve.
"It's also pleasing to see council facilities housed under the same roof, and this is a move which will undoubtedly make accessing health and council services much easier and more convenient for local people."
Hull Citycare - which is a true public private shareholding partnership between Hull Teaching PCT and city development company the Sewell Group - is one of 48 LIFT companies in the country.
Its first flagship project is set to be the Orchard Park Neighbourhood Integrated Service Centre, the seventh and largest centre which will also join up both health, local authority services and community spaces in one building.
Charles Lewis, Citycare chair, added: "The opening of this new facility in the city is yet another leading example from Hull Citycare. It provides local residents with easy access to primary healthcare and council services under one roof, something which this particular area has never experienced before."
Paul Sewell, managing director of the Sewell Group, said: "We are delighted that the sixth centre is complete. It is now accepted around the country that any area which has a LIFT company and programme has a vital delivery vehicle for regeneration."
Meanwhile, Eddie Coates-Madden, Hull City Council customer services manager added: "The new Calvert Centre not only shows the council's commitment to upgrading our already excellent Customer Service Centres, but also our work in partnerships to make sure local people can get everything they need in one visit. We are delighted with the new building, and hope our customers will love it too."
The construction of the centre in Calvert Lane has provided schools in the area with the chance to carry out related projects. Pupils at Ainthorpe Primary School have watched the building rise from the ground, with two pupils laying the first bricks on the site following a competition. Youngsters from Eastfield Primary School, Anlaby Road, visited the site to learn about the world of work.
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· LIFT provides a flexible mechanism for translating health service plans into investment propositions, so developments are geared towards meeting local health needs
· LIFT will remove the disincentives of practicing in inner city areas, by developing innovative and more attractive propositions for GPs, and other primary healthcare professionals
· Citycare - Hull's NHS LIFT Company
· Citycare is the company that is delivering the NHS LIFT (Local Improvement Finance Trust) for the Hull Teaching Primary Care Trust and the population of Hull
· It is a partnership between Hull Teaching Primary Care Trust (PCT) and the Sewell Group
· This PPP (Public Private Partnership) is responsible for property development, design, construction, maintenance and estates management services delivering over £100m worth of investment over a 25 year period. Investment that will deliver a step change to Hull's primary care estate
· Citycare's aim is to provide Hull with a community-focused, robust and sustainable health care network over the coming years
· Citycare's plans and objectives will underpin the modernisation of primary and community care in the city, whilst securing significant improvements in the health of local people and will be a major part of Hull's rapidly regenerating Cityscape
· Hull LIFT has selected a Private Sector Partners (PSP) in Sewell through a competitive process, an innovative Private Sector driven (60%-40%) Public Private Partnership has been formed in Hull Citycare with the Hull PCT and Partnerships for Health
· Sewell was chosen because the company brings development, estates management and maintenance expertise to deliver a step change in the quality of Hull's healthcare estate
· Sewell's key function is to identify the most efficient manner in which the required estate can be provided including both health and complementary non-health services. In particular, the identification of commercial opportunities and investment in the sustained modernisation of the primary and community health estate will be managed through the PSP
· Sewell is a multi-disciplined group based around Development, Construction, Facilities Management and Retail built upon a business philosophy of being proactive and innovative
· Sewell offers a diverse range of building solutions through partnership working including the first PFI School in the UK, York Schools PFI and Preston Road Village Centre
· As a Private Sector Partner in Hull Citycare, through the government's LIFT initiative, Sewell brings development, estates management and maintenance expertise to deliver a step change in the quality of Hull's healthcare estate
· Four other new community health centres have recently been completed in the city: Park, Newington, Marfleet and Alexandra. Calvert Lane is under construction and will open in November. The largest project, with an investment of £14m is Orchard Park which is in planning
· Sewell's Facilities Management company services of all its public private partnership across the health and education sectors providing buildings management and maintenance and associated services including cleaning and catering
· Sewell continues to invest in talent, encouraging proactive people with a passion for innovation and continual improvement. Recognition of this has come through a host of awards - local, regional and national