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07 November 2011

Staff celebrate "topping out" of extension to the Children's Hospital

Work to centralise specialist children's health services at the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children (BRHC) reaches a new milestone today when builders complete the steel structure of the extension to the hospital. 

The extension is being built to accommodate services that will move from Frenchay Hospital in 2014. Children's neurosciences, scoliosis surgery, burns and plastic surgery services will move to the Children's Hospital in 2014. All specialist inpatient children's services in Bristol will then be located together. 

Dr Jacqueline Cornish, Head of the Division of Women's and Children's Services at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust (UH Bristol), said: "Bristol is proud to provide some of the best specialist children's services in the country at both the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children (BRHC) and at Frenchay Hospital. When inpatient services are located together on one site, we will further enhance the high quality care we provide. 

"The Children's Hospital will also be in a position to become a national designated paediatric neurosurgery centre, cardiac surgical centre, the South West Principal Teenage and Young Adult Cancer Treatment Centre, and the complex scoliosis centre for the South West and beyond. Frenchay Hospital has designation as a national children's burn centre and that designation will move to the Children's Hospital when services re-locate here." 

Dr Amber Young, Speciality Director for Specialist Paediatrics at North Bristol NHS Trust, said: "The move of children's services from North Bristol NHS Trust to the BRHC will allow us to capitalise on the very high quality services provided for children at Frenchay Hospital and develop these with the fantastic opportunities offered within the Children's Hospital. The joining together of both children's inpatient facilities will allow Bristol to continue as one of the highest quality children's services in the country and further afield." 

Builders Laing O'Rourke laid the foundations for the extension in the summer.  Now that the steel structure is complete they will make the extension watertight and begin fitting out the insides in time for services to move in 2014.  

Deborah Lee, Director for Strategic Development for UH Bristol, said: "This is an important moment as both hospitals and trusts work together to centralise specialist services for children on one site. Celebrating this milestone together is only the start of this important relationship."