Martin Johnson CBE officially opens St Luke’s Treatment Centre

Project partners join Martin Johnson to mark the official opening

by Freja Cooper

St Luke’s Treatment Centre reached a major milestone today after the state of the art building was officially opened by local Rugby Union legend, Martin Johnson CBE.

The treatment centre provides services to patients and the public across Market Harborough and surrounding areas, bringing together healthcare services provided by Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Alliance (LLR Alliance), Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT) and the Market Harborough and Bosworth Partnership.

Since opening its doors to patients in March 2017 the outpatient services have treated over 3,269 patients. The Market Harborough and Bosworth Partnership branch surgery and the Minor Injuries Unit have seen in excess of 10,000 patients. Services available at St Luke’s Treatment Centre include; a Minor Injuries Unit, GP branch surgery, x-ray suite, mental health and outpatient clinics, a specially equipped physiotherapy suite and podiatry rooms.

Martin Johnson unveils the ceremonial plaque

Martin Johnson CBE said: “It was a real honour to officially open St Luke’s Treatment Centre. The facility is a great asset for the people of Market Harborough and the surrounding areas and offers so many vital healthcare services in a single location. As a local resident, it’s reassuring to know that if I or any of my family needs care, there is a fantastic healthcare service on our doorstep.”

The £7.5million development is the result of a partnership between East Leicestershire and Rutland Clinical Commissioning Group (ELR CCG), NHS Property Services, NHS England and NHS healthcare providers and was built by Morgan Sindall.

Patients have been utilising the services at the new, purpose-built treatment centre since 7 March 2017 and have praised how modern, accessible, clean and easy to navigate the building is.

Sara Lowes, whose mother Jean has been receiving outpatient treatment at St Luke’s since she was discharged from Nottingham City Hospital Burns Unit, said: “Following a bad accident my mum was discharged from hospital to return home and receive supplemental care in the community, which was really important for us as a family. As mum was still recovering, she needed continuing support to walk and undertake some simple tasks, so it was important that she was able to receive treatment in a fit-for-purpose facility and the new St Luke’s Treatment Centre has been exactly that.”

“When I have accompanied mum to her appointments, the process has been really easy. Parking is much better compared to the old Market Harborough District Hospital, and as the new treatment centre is well lit and sign-posted, mum has felt independent enough to walk into reception on her own where she has always been greeted by helpful and professional staff who have taken great care of her. Being welcomed into a professional and well equipped facility helps to ease concerns during an already stressful time.”

Tim Sacks, Chief Operating Officer at East Leicestershire and Rutland Clinical Commissioning Group, added: “Since the first patients arrived we’ve seen the benefit of having vital healthcare services all under one roof, allowing patients to have easy access to core services in a convenient location without having to travel long distances for treatment. We are delighted that the people of Market Harborough and the surrounding communities are benefitting from this purpose built site.”

The construction of the modern treatment centre began in December 2015 and was very much welcomed by local people who had campaigned for a new purpose built healthcare service that is representative of the growing population and patient needs.

Alasdair White, Head of Construction Project Management at NHS Property Services, said “We’re proud to have delivered this treatment centre as part of our work to ensure the NHS operates from modern, fit-for-purpose buildings, and we know it is making a real difference to patient care in the local area. We’d like to thank our NHS and developer partners for their hard work in creating this excellent facility.”

Rachel Dewar, Head of Community Health Services, at Leicestershire Partnership Trust (LPT), added: “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to deliver services from the new treatment centre at St Luke’s. We have received extremely positive feedback from staff and patients, particularly around how pleasant the environment is in comparison to the facilities we were using in the area.

“The accessibility is much better, and we have increased the number of clinics we are delivering in the area. Patients from the wards at St Luke’s are also feeling the benefits, having diagnostic services such as x-ray available to them without travelling further afield.”

The treatment centre is the largest single investment in healthcare facilities for Leicestershire in recent times and is a testament to the commitment of NHS partners delivering services to meet patients’ needs.

The Partners of the Market Harborough and Bosworth Partnership, added: “We are delighted to have opened a branch surgery, and transferred the Minor Injuries Unit, to the new treatment centre. The modern facilities have enabled us to integrate our minor illness and minor injuries services, which are both supported by our onsite GP. With the forecast growth in the population of the town, our branch surgery gives us the additional capacity to meet the demand for primary care. The minor injuries unit enables patients to be seen locally as an acute on the day service instead of having to travel to a hospital Accident and Emergency department or walk-in centre.”

Elliot Howard-Jones, Director of Commissioning Operations at NHS England (Central Midlands), said: “I’m delighted to be part of the formal opening of one of the NHS’s biggest investments in planned care in the locality. It’s fantastic to see how many people in Market Harborough and surrounding communities are benefiting from this excellent new healthcare development.”

Sean Bowles, Managing Director for the central region of UK construction and infrastructure business at Morgan Sindall, commented: “The construction process generated enormous public interest due to the significance of the treatment centre to the people of Market Harborough and it’s gratifying to see how well the completed facility is being received.

We’re incredibly proud to have successfully delivered this landmark project through the East Midlands Property Alliance (EMPA) for NHS Property Services and confident it will be an enduring addition to healthcare provision in the area.”

Martin Johnson CBE unveiled a commemorative plaque to officially open St Luke’s Treatment Centre which is now permanently housed in the main entrance and will be accessible to both patients and the local community for years to come.

For more on St Luke’s, including a video of the opening, click here.