£10m unified health centre opened in Belfast

A £10 million centre which will bring health and social services in Belfast under one roof was opened on Thursday. Physiotherapy, dental work and nursing will be available at Knockbreda Health and Care Centre.

It is the fifth such site developed by Belfast Health Trust.

Health Minister Michael McGimpsey said: “Knockbreda Health and Care Centre will transform health and social services in this area, making a real difference to local people.

“The centre will provide greater access to a wide range of services in the community, close to where people live and work.”

It includes 10 consultation rooms, diagnostic equipment and support accommodation. Services include adoption, GP out of hours surgeries and a Citizens’ Advice Bureau.

Mr McGimpsey added: “Primary care is the cornerstone of our health and social care system in the 21st century and this centre is a practical example of a one-stop-shop approach to primary healthcare, bringing together, for the first time, services which had previously been provided from a number of buildings throughout the Borough of Castlereagh.”

In June 2009 it received recognition at the Design and Health International Academy Awards in Singapore which honours professional excellence in designing healthy buildings.

Mr McGimpsey added: “This recognition clearly demonstrates that Northern Ireland is a global leader in the design of health and social care facilities.”