As partner organisations within the Norfolk and Waveney Integrated Care System (ICS), NHS Norfolk and Waveney and Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk have been working together to drive forward improvements in healthcare and general practice services in the wider King’s Lynn area. These focus on improving local people’s access to high quality health and wellbeing services closer to where they live and work.
Several important developments are currently being considered by NHS Norfolk and Waveney and the Borough Council which, if approved, will deliver potentially £20m of public and private sector investment in premises for primary care services in King’s Lynn over the next 18 months.
NHS Norfolk and Waveney is in process of developing four Primary Care “Hubs” with £25.2 million from the Department of Health and Social Care as part of the Wave 4B funding stream. The planned Hubs include extensions of existing buildings in Thetford and Sprowston, and two new-build healthcare facilities in Rackheath and King’s Lynn. Plans for the new building in King’s Lynn are still being developed which would see the new building sited at Nar Ouse Way, close to the Enterprise Zone developments also taking place.
An Engagement Group for the scheme, including healthcare organisations, NHS Property Services who are providing construction management expertise, patient representation, the Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk, local community group representatives and local Councillors, meets and receives regular updates on progress. This group helped to inform the choice of the site for the new building.
It will house services from the Primary Care Network and outpatient services from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn NHS Foundation Trust. NHS Norfolk and Waveney also expects space to be available within the building which other local healthcare services and organisations will be able to book.
Subject to planning permission, NHS approvals, and relevant contractual agreements being in place, the building will be developed to open in May 2024. The NHS decision on the business case for the building is expected in August 2023.
In addition to the new healthcare facility on Nar Ouse Way, a new building for St James Medical Practice on Edward Benefer Way is also due to open in January 2024. This £8m new build, state of the art facility will provide a wide range of health and wellbeing services for West Norfolk residents. The new surgery will help to meet existing and future demand for healthcare services with the ability to take on around 5,500 more patients than could be served at the previous town-centre facility.
Cllr Sam Sandell, the borough council’s cabinet member for people and communities, said: “Good-quality primary care is a critical part of effective health care provision and we know current services are under pressure. The prospect of a new primary care facility to the south of King’s Lynn is something we can all get behind and the borough council will be doing everything in its power to support delivery of the new hub at Nar Ouse.
“I would like to thank all those involved in the steering group for their contribution to this important work – it is truly a team effort.”
Paul Higham, Associate Director Primary Care Estates from NHS Norfolk and Waveney, said “We are pleased to be working together with local partners like the borough council to continue to progress the planned development for a new primary care facility in the King’s Lynn area that will further improve residents’ access to health and care services now, and for the future. The planned Hub at Nar Ouse will help to transform how health and care services are delivered, bringing services closer to where people live, enabling more joined-up care, and supporting residents to access information and wider services that will help them to live healthy and well.”