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£47.6m spent on new hospital project so far

£47.6m spent on new hospital project so far

Saturday 18 September 2021

£47.6m spent on new hospital project so far

Almost £50m has been spent on the new hospital project so far, with another £10m set to be spent before States Members decide to borrow £756m to fund the rest.

But while the political head of the hospital project has conceded that £804m is “a lot of money”, he denied it is excessive.

Addressing Scrutiny on Thursday, Senator Lyndon Farnham said that the project team has resisted pressure to add more expensive services to the new health campus at Overdale.

Next month, the Council of Ministers will ask the States Assembly to allow it to borrow up to £756m to fund the new hospital, which is due to open in 2026.

The Future Hospital Review Panel held its last review before the debate on the ‘Outline Business Case’ - a document laying out the plan to fund the new hospital - which is scheduled for debate on 5 October.

The panel heard that:

  • The total spend to date of the project is £47.6m, made up of £11.1m spent before 2021 and £36.5m spent this year.
  • £19.7m has been spent on acquiring land and property, and £0.9m has been spent so far on the temporary move to the old Les Quennevais School.
  • The forecast to October is a total spend of £59.5m, including £48.3m spent this year.
  • Adding £21m topped up by Government this year, the Government's total budgeted spend this year, up to the point of borrowing, will be £70m.
  • Around £45m would have been spent on the Our Hospital project by the time of the Outline Business Case debate.
  • The 800 car parking spaces next-door to the hospital established in earlier designs is likely to come down to align the project with Jersey target to be carbon neutral by 2030.
  • The day-to-day costs of maintaining the hospital once it is open – its ‘facilities management costs’ - are yet to be determined but are part of a study which won’t be ready be ready in time for the Outline Business Case debate.
  • The doubling of beds in the private ward has been in response to clinical feedback and the desire to generate more revenue from health insurance payments, which would otherwise go to off-island health providers. It will also provide a self-contained ‘hospital within a hospital’, should Jersey face another pandemic requiring patient separation.
  • The 75% occupancy rate target for the new hospital, which has determined the number of beds it will have, has been reached because the Jersey is an island therefore patients cannot be easily transferred to other hospitals.
  • The 8% profit and overhead margin agreed with the ‘design and delivery partner’ Rok FCC, a joint-venture which will build the hospital is not excessive, say the Government, and has been approved by its costs’ advisers.
  • The equipment in the hospital will be “higher end” but not “cutting edge or experimental”. This will put it “in the zone of safety and not the zone of danger” and be the cheapest option in the medium term, according to the project’s Clinical Director, Professor Ashok Handa. 
  • 14 properties have been bought by the Government around Overdale. Two private properties look likely to be compulsorily purchased. The Government is still in discussions with the Parish of St. Helier about its land, which includes the People's Park. 
  • 20 sites have been assessed for the new home of the Jersey Bowling Club. "Positive" conversations are taking place with several landowners.

Members have already selected Overdale as the site of the new hospital but have yet to approve its funding. If the Outline Business Case is approved, the Government will take out a public-rated sterling bond, with an interest rate of up to 2.5% per annum, payable in between 30 and 40 years' time.

£27m was spent on the previous 'Future Hospital' project to build a new facility on the current Gloucester Street site.

While the project was scrapped, the Government said that not all the money had been wasted, as some of the research work would be useful for the Overdale project.

Following Thursday's hearing, Future Hospital Panel Chair Senator Kristina Moore said that her team remained "concerned about the lack of detail in the Outline Business Case'.

She added that they would be working on an alternative plan "to deliver an affordable plan for future healthcare" over the weekend.

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Posted by Private Individual on
Taxpayers beware!

You are going to have NO MONEY in your pocket after they bring in the new taxes to pay for this project.
Posted by John Sheen on
Let’s hope Senator Moore isn’t going to commit political suicide and try to stop this. While we may all disagree on the perfect site, she has to stop these attempts to block progress and let Jersey get the hospital it needs.
Posted by Martin on
You HAVE to admire the BARE FACED behaviour of spending FIFTY MILLION POUNDS on effectively nothing & then spending another £800 M on the Hospital against the majority of our wishes ( AND it WILL be more than £800m) & then the interest £$ on the £800 M and the forty years of added financial strain on the next generation/S to pay all this back!

The good news is that by then - I WILL be dead!

Does anyone want to buy a fishing boat?
Posted by Paul Troalic on
So Senator Farnham concede that £804million is 'a lot of money'. Well that is very noble of him.
Perhaps the question he should be asked is if it was your money and your project would you be spending it?
Of course he wouldn't because it isn't his money it belongs to the tax payer.
This project goes from sublime to the ridiculous.
Why would anyone decide to build a hospital on anything but empty land? Why would you demolish a perfectly good building housing snd providing excellent services for the sake of the land on which it stands.
Why would you build a hospital on top of a hill with dubious access from all sides?
The whole thing is quite preposterous and Senator Farnham should admit he has made a mistake and more importantly underestimated public feelings and opinion.
Let's hope we can return to normality before more millions are spent.
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