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Pioneering children’s hospital for east of England will integrate physical and mental health services

07 December 2018
A highly innovative children’s hospital for the east of England has been given the go ahead today by Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock.

Up to £100 million of public capital has been made available for a completely new facility that is purpose-built to meet the needs of the region’s youngest patients. It will integrate mental and physical health and provide the highest quality services with ground breaking science and research.

Built on land adjacent to Addenbrooke’s and the Rosie Hospitals, the children’s hospital will bring together some of the world’s top scientists to explore new ways of diagnosing and treating some of the most challenging diseases of childhood. Mapping the whole human genome and understanding the genetic basis of disease and recovery is central to the hospital’s vision. It aims to make an important contribution globally to the development of children’s healthcare while providing world class care for families in the east of England.

The project is a partnership between Cambridge University Hospitals (CUH) NHS Foundation Trust and Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust. Other partners include the University of Cambridge and the development is a major part of the strategy to invest in world class facilities led by the sustainability and transformation partnership (STP) for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Tracy Dowling, chief executive of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, which provides mental health services for young people and adults as well as physical health services for older people and those with long-term conditions, said: “We are delighted this funding has been announced. Physical and mental health services are intrinsically linked, and this is the most incredible opportunity to bring them under one roof for the benefit of young people and their families. It is also great news for those who have worked so hard for so many years to develop outstanding services for some of the children and young people in the region who are most in need.” 

Roland Sinker, CUH chief executive, said: “Today’s announcement is a tribute to our outstanding staff who care for very poorly children day in day out in facilities that currently are not reflecting the world class service we provide. We are united as partners behind the vision for this hospital which is to bring together mental and physical health and radically transform healthcare for children and their families in this region.”

Professor of paediatrics at the University of Cambridge David Rowitch said: “It is time to bridge the divide between physical and mental health and move away from silo working. With strengths across the board from genomics to complex medical care, child and adolescent psychiatry, Cambridge is perfectly positioned to lead by example.”

Other hospitals to benefit from new Government funding include Hinchingbrooke, which gets £26 million and Addenbrooke’s Hospital which receives £19 million.