The expansion plan of St Margaret’s Hospital in Epping, UK, is underway with the appointment of Morgan Sindall as the construction contractor.

Morgan Sindall will construct a new Community Diagnostic Centre (CDC) at the hospital, which is expected to open in the second quarter (March to May) of 2025.

This project has been procured by Morgan Sindall under the ProCure 23 (P23) framework for the design and construction of NHS capital projects.

The CDC is the main phase out of three phases of work that Sindall would deliver for The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust (PAHT).

The project is allocated over £14m ($17.72m) by PAHT and involves refurbishing and extending a bungalow on the hospital site to house MRI scanning facilities and outpatient services.

The CDC is said to be part of a nationwide initiative to shift diagnostics from acute hospitals to community sites to improve public access and facilitate earlier diagnoses.

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It will be one of the nearly 30 new centres planned in the UK.

The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust director of strategy and estates Michael Meredith said: “The Community Diagnostic Centre at St Margaret’s Hospital will support us to provide modern, integrated and outstanding care to our local community.

“We will be able to provide quicker access to diagnostic tests, closer to our patients’ homes. We are focused on having our patients at the heart of our services, with new and enhanced ways of working and providing care.”Morgan will use its digital carbon analysis tool, CarboniCa, to minimise the work’s emissions and enhance sustainability.

Morgan Sindall Construction east region managing director Peter Whitmore said: “The new West Essex Community Diagnostic Centre will bring a wide range of crucial healthcare benefits right to the doorstep of the community.

“To ensure that this project provides as much value as possible for the local area, we’ve been collaborating closely with The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust to create a new facility that will meet the multifaceted needs of the Trust and its patients.

The CDC will include two CT scanners, new ultrasound, cardiology and respiratory equipment, and more phlebotomists to cater to the growing number of blood tests.

The project aims to improve patient experience, expedite diagnostic services, and contribute to the NHS’s net-zero goals by consolidating tests in one patient visit.