Published date: 28 April 2022

Effectively transforming the healthcare estate

Last month Christopher King, Principal Strategic Asset Manager at NHS Property Services, hosted a session at Government Event’s NHS Estates Conference to discuss the everchanging demand on NHS space. In this blog, he shares some key insights from the discussion.

The rise of community-based care and flexible services 

There is an everchanging demand on NHS space with the rise of community-based care and flexible services. Community services often support people with multiple, complex health needs who depend on many health and social care services to meet those needs. They therefore work closely with other parts of the health and care system, such as GPs, hospitals, pharmacies, and care homes. Many healthcare services are being moved closer to communities and are delivered by a range of providers that do not require exclusive use of space. Therefore, the ability to book rooms on a flexible basis offers a cost-effective solution to their property needs. 

Hybrid estate and technology solution 

The way that space is used is changing, raising a need for a more flexible and sessional approach – one such solution is NHS Open Space, the first nationwide room booking solution for the NHS estate. If space is not being used to full capacity by existing NHS occupiers, we should make it more readily available for other NHS bodies and wider health and wellbeing services to rent. Our NHS Open Space service enables flexible booking of a range of both clinical and non-clinical rooms – ranging from examination rooms to offices – as and when they need it. 

With the use of innovative technology, NHS Open Space maximises utilisation and provides a greater choice of flexible accommodation in the heart of our local communities,  reducing the pressure on large hospitals and making life easier for patients. 

Looking ahead 

My ambition for NHS Open Space is to grow across the wider NHS estate, welcoming new services into our sites, helping make better use of NHS space, and in time we hope to create a single solution for the wider NHS and even public sector estate. 

Learn more about NHS Open Space

NHS Property Services has developed a new service that allows the flexible booking of NHS space, offering customers more choice, communities a wider range of services, and making more efficient use of the NHS estate.

Learn more