Ministers give green light to £12m Highland hospital

Shona Robison
Shona Robison

Cabinet secretary for health and wellbeing Shona Robison has approved NHS Highland’s “exciting proposals” for the modernisation of its community and hospital services in Badenoch and Strathspey.

The go-ahead will mean the construction of a new £12 million community hospital and resource centre in Aviemore, and the eventual closure of the Ian Charles Hospital in Grantown-on-Spey and the St Vincent’s Hospital in Kingussie.

As well as a new hospital and resource centre, the decision will mean the expansion of care-at-home and community services, which will support the further integration of health and social care – something which Ms Robison said in a letter to NHS Highland chair Mr Coutts that she considered to be a “vital component” of the plans.

Aviemore Health Centre and the Glen Day Centre in Aviemore will be relocated to the new facility.

Speaking on the proposals, Ms Robison said: “The Scottish Government is committed to providing modern, state-of-the-art healthcare facilities in which to provide the high-quality care patients rightly expect.

“These proposals will bring new, modern facilities to the area and I look forward to the board taking them forward in close consultation with the people of Badenoch and Strathspey.”

With approval having been granted, detailed planning for the new services and facilities will now get under way in earnest with a view to preparing the formal business case necessary in such projects. Work will include determining the specification for the new building and purchase of the site, in Aviemore’s Technology Park, in the town centre.

It is hoped that construction will start around summer 2017, with a view to possible occupation of the new facilities in December the following year.

Mr Coutts said: “We have had tremendous input from the people of Badenoch and Strathspey throughout this process and we will continue to involve them as we work on writing a new chapter in the provision of health and social care in the area.”

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