One of the world’s most influential medical technology hubs will now be created at the Addenbrooke’s site in Cambridge after the UK government decided to inject £165 million into a move to the city hotspot for heart transplant pioneer Papworth Hospital and abandoned plans to have it absorbed into the NHS’s biggest loss-making trust, Peterborough & Stamford.
Politicians picked up the cudgels and have forced a figurative and literal change of heart. Government heavyweights George Osborne and Danny Alexander announced the £165m move from Papworth to Addenbrooke’s today to widespread acclaim.
With a world-leading teaching hospital on campus, backed by a globally renowned cancer research hub, Papworth’s trailblazing in heart surgery will dovetail with research on the causes of the disease being conducted by clinicians on site. If AstraZeneca fights off Pfizer and goes ahead with plans to take 2,000 jobs, its corporate HQ and global R & D centre to the campus, then Cambridge can expect to attract even more international scientists to the campus.
Papworth, a leading heart and lung hospital, has been campaigning for years for a move to Cambridge from its existing site where some of the buildings are more than 150 years old. A state-of-the-art new 310-bed hospital will now go ahead at Addenbrooke’s under a PFI initiative.
Work is expected to start onsite next year with completion either in 2017 or 2018.
George Osborne added: “I’ve been a strong supporter of this move. As I said on a visit to Cambridge last week, there is great value in these two leading hospitals working more closely together and continuing to provide first class medical care.
“By backing Papworth’s relocation to a medical research cluster we’re supporting the world leading science which is vitally important to Britain’s economic future. It is only because we have been working through our long term economic plan and got a grip on day to day spending that we can protect our NHS and make great investments like this.”