What are Feasibility Studies?
Currently, the focus of the NHFP team and our advisors is to produce a series of feasibility studies which will confirm whether, and how, we can deliver a multi-site healthcare solution for Jersey.
What does this process involve?
Firstly, we need to ensure that the project team understands the clinical clusters of services that best support the dedicated medical, technical and support staff working in Health and Community Services (HCS). These are what we call ‘clinical adjacencies’.
We recently undertook a series of drop-in workshops with colleagues across HCS to understand their preferences for a multi-site approach, and what services they believed could be delivered in community hubs like Les Quennevais.
This will enable the Health Planning Team to start preparing a Functional Brief that describes the services that will be delivered in the new healthcare facilities. Further consultation will take place with HCS to ensure that the Functional Brief meets their requirements.
The feasibility studies will then be looking closely at the available space, and the space we can possibly acquire, at the sites that have been identified for multi-site healthcare facilities.
This will help us to understand the usable development space, which we call capacity, at both Overdale and Kensington Place. It also helps us to identify the physical parameters (like roads and existing infrastructure) and other issues that may affect that capacity, and how the two sites could work with others like the Enid Quenault Health and Wellbeing Centre at Les Quennevais or areas near to Clinique Pinel at St Saviour.
A Draft Feasibility Report, which includes preparing outline options for each site, based on the preferred clinical adjacencies, and test drawings which would show how clinical departments would fit into the different locations, will then be produced.
The Final Feasibility Report is on target to be completed in May 2023, alongside a refreshed Strategic Outline Case.
Earlier this month, a Planning Permit was issued which enables the demolition of derelict buildings at Overdale.
This was issued following the completion of a Planning Obligation Agreement between the Ministers for Environment, Infrastructure and Health & Social Services, which the independent planning inspector recommended in May 2022.
The Planning Obligation Agreement requires the Ministers for Infrastructure and Health to meet certain requirements in developing Overdale for new healthcare facilities including:
- Addressing the future relocation of Jersey Bowling Club on commencement of any highway works
- A contribution by the development to the West Park Surface Water Separation Scheme
- Measures to ensure highways access, bus infrastructure, parking, and a travel plan
It should be noted that these Obligations relate to the Our Hospital proposals and may not be required in the new schemes. The Minister for Infrastructure has already been clear that he would like options to come forward so that some of these Obligations do not need to be met, i.e. the relocation of the Jersey Bowling Club. These are currently being investigated and will be presented in the Feasibility Studies.
We’re currently preparing the tender documents that will allow us to appoint a local contractor who will demolish the unused buildings at Overdale. Once appointed, that work should start in Summer of this year.
Earlier this month, the Minister for Infrastructure presented a Report to the States Assembly to agree the sale of the Andium Homes site at Kensington Place to the public, to safeguard the land for health and care facilities.
This enacts a decision made by the States Assembly when they debated the Government Plan to allocate £16 million for the purchase.
Andium originally acquired the site from separate owners, and have invested in the site since then, including preparing designs and a planning application, which has been approved. Physical works have also been undertaken to prepare the site for development, including demolition and ground clearance. These have added significant value since they are beneficial for any future development.
We have also begun early engagement with property owners in the immediate area of Kensington Place to discuss the possibility of acquiring additional land, should it be required, to allow us to increase the total size of the new healthcare facilities in a central St Helier location.
Enid Quenault Health and Wellbeing Centre, Les Quennevais
Works on the new health and wellbeing facilities at the former Les Quennevais School site are continuing at pace, and we anticipate that they will be completed on schedule this Summer, allowing many of the existing services that are currently operating from Overdale to be moved there.
This will include:
- Pain Service
- Child Development Therapy Centre
- Older Adult Community Mental Health, Memory Assessment and Psychology
- Diabetes and Endocrinology
- Pre-assessment Clinic
- Rheumatology, Neurology and Urology
- Central Support and Staff Areas
We will be welcoming the Departmental Leads from these teams to the Enid Quenault Health and Wellbeing Centre at the end of April, to give them a tour of their new home, alongside the media.
Our upcoming work
Transparent communications and engagement are critical to Ministers and the NHFP team, and we will be undertaking a series of public engagements across the coming weeks to set out the details we are developing in the feasibility studies. We will also be:
- Re-establishing the Citizens Panel and engaging with interest groups
- Reaching out to the communities living in the Overdale and Kensington Place areas to ensure we are communicating in the ways they prefer
- Publishing a new HCS Engagement Framework, which will ensure we are giving HCS staff the greatest opportunity to engage with the Programme, and that they receive clear feedback on how their input is being considered and incorporated.