North Bristol tenders for Frenchay social care redevelopment

Trust publishes tender for building development works to create a health and social care centre for 2014

NHS Bristol trust is looking for a private sector partner to carry out work at Frenchay hospital, which will be downgraded from an acute hospital to a health and social care centre.

A spokeswoman for the trust told Guardian Healthcare that acute care such as surgery and emergency services will be transferred to the new £430m Southmead hospital that it is currently building.

Frenchay community hospital will include 68 rehabilitation beds, outpatient beds, therapies and diagnostic tests. The trust has said that this could be built along with a nursing home and extra care housing, which will be part of the plan to make it a health and social care centre. Space will also be available for a GP surgery on the site.

The proposals will involve a third party arranging the building plans, while the NHS leases back the facilities. According to a notice in the Official Journal of the European Union, the maximum length of the lease will be up to 30 years, while the capital cost of building on the 70 acre Frenchay site is estimated to be up to £22m. The notice also says that the service contract for the provision of care services is expected to cost £3.5m annually.

“It is envisaged that the successful partner will also be required to provide hard facilities management and soft facilities management services to the ambulatory care facility and the 68 bedded community in-patient rehabilitation unit and private nursing care bedded unit – the provision of soft facilities management being an integral part of the nursing care to be provided,” says the notice. It adds that bidders for the contract will be provided with a specification for information management and technology. North Bristol hopes to award a contract towards the end of 2012.

Frenchay hospital’s brain injury rehabilitation unit and head injury treatment unit will remain on the site, according to the trust’s plans.

Proposals were approved in autumn 2010 by the relevant local NHS boards and local authority health overview and scrutiny committees. NHS South Gloucestershire previously led on the plans for Frenchay hospital, but North Bristol has taken the lead on implementation as a result of the changing role of primary care trusts and the government’s NHS reforms.