Lichfield Street Surgery, Sycamore House Surgery, The Limes Surgery & Saddlers Medical Centre
Work has now started on a new medical centre in Walsall town centre, which will deliver GP services to more than 25,000 patients.
The new medical centre will replace the Challenge Building on the corner of Hatherton Road and Hatherton Street, bringing together four existing GP practices under one roof.
The scheme is being led by the partners of Umbrella Medical, which will relocate The Limes Medical Centre, Sycamore House Medical Centre, Lichfield Street Surgery and Saddlers Surgery into one modern, purpose-built facility, serving over 25,000 patients.
The £12.6million scheme will be part financed by a £4.5million grant from NHS England from its Estates and Technology Transformation Fund, in addition to private finance.
By coming together, the practices will offer a greater variety of services to patients, reduce waiting times for patients and provide access to medical specialists across the four sites.
The centre, which is conveniently located in the town centre, will provide consulting rooms, treatment rooms, training and meeting rooms and an on-site pharmacy, as well as 110 on-site car parking spaces.
Demolition has commenced with construction of the new building to start in 2022 and completion and occupation scheduled for August 2023.
The scheme will incorporate sustainable build and design measures, and will be built to meet a strict sustainability standard known as the BREEAM ‘Excellent’ standard, ensuring the building is as environmentally friendly as possible.
Dr Martin Stevens, GP Partner at Umbrella Medical, which runs Lichfield Street, Sycamore House and Limes Surgeries, said “We are delighted to be moving forward with our plans for the new medical centre. The new surgery will allow us to provide increased capacity, with more consulting and treatment rooms for staff to see more patients.
“It will provide a convenient and comfortable environment for patients, visitors and staff, with better access for patients with disabilities, the elderly and parents with children. We will also be able to provide an improved range of services which should help reduce the need for patients to attend hospital.
“We believe this landmark development will improve the health outcomes and wellbeing of patients all across Walsall.”
Joan Nock, Patient Participation Group member from The Limes surgery, said: “The excellent doctors and staff at my practice work in cramped and inadequate conditions. There is no sterile space for minor surgery and no space for meetings, and the building is surrounded with double yellow lines. The prospect of working in a state of the art, medically equipped building is a dream come true. An extra hope is that more doctors and staff will be attracted to work in the new medical centre and its facilities.”
Dr Masood Ahmed, Chief Medical Officer for the Black Country and West Birmingham Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We’re really pleased to be supporting this long-awaited project which will see new, modern and spacious healthcare facilities delivered to the local community in Walsall.
“This state-of-the-art centre will make a real difference to local healthcare provision and support significant improvements to patients’ experience. Patients will benefit from a modern, spacious and environmentally-friendly new health centre which has good access and better facilities.
“It will also enable the four practices to extend the range of services they provide, expand training opportunities and support patients with complex needs who require more specialist treatment.”
Councillor Adrian Andrew, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Regeneration at Walsall Council said: “This project will bring a modern GP facility in to the town centre, with close proximity to the bus station.
“The site is a strategic development opportunity in the town centre and complements the development plans for the wider area and the emerging vision for the town centre through the masterplan.”