latest health care news

06.02.18

Carillion liquidation forces delays at £335m Liverpool hospital

The new Royal Liverpool Hospital will suffer from delays after the collapse of contractor Carillion, trust bosses have confirmed.

Officials at the Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS Trust (RLBUHT) say the facility may not be open until next year, a long way from its scheduled March 2018 completion date.

In a statement on the issue, Aidan Kehoe, CEO of the trust, said the building was 90% finished but that it would be “challenging” to complete work by this year.

The £335m hospital will contain more than 640 new beds and is being built alongside the existing Royal Liverpool, which will be demolished after the new facility opens.

Kehoe said: “At this stage the preferred option for the Hospital Company is to work with the existing sub-contractors and Carillion staff who have been working on the scheme to ensure continuity in the completion of the hospital.

“That involves complex discussions with the sub-contractors to ensure we can get them onsite as early as possible.”

While the chief executive said he was 100% certain the hospital would eventually be completed, he said there would be a definite delay while new contractor agreements are decided.

Carillion went into liquidation early last month with £900m debts, leaving many of its public sector contracts uncompleted.

While NHS Improvement was able to put contingencies in place to ensure services continued, there are some major construction projects which have been put in jeopardy.

Similar to the Royal Liverpool project, construction of the £350m Midland Metropolitan Hospital has also been thrown into doubt, despite the work being two-thirds completed.

Toby Lewis, chief executive of the Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust – which is building the hospital – said the organisation was working to “resolve any uncertainty” relating to the issue but that there were still problems to deal with.

Top image: RLBUHT

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