NHS bosses confirm new Nightingale hospital will be built in North Yorkshire

A new Nightingale hospital to care for coronavirus patients is being built in North Yorkshire.

By Corinne Macdonald
Friday, 3rd April 2020, 10:17 am
Updated Friday, 3rd April 2020, 12:27 pm

NHS bosses have today confirmed the hospital will be built in Harrogate at the Harrogate Convention Centre and will be able to care for up to 500 patients.

It will serve the wider Yorkshire and the Humber region to provide extra beds if local services need them during the peak of the outbreak.

The new North Yorkshire site will be in addition to three in London, Manchester and Birmingham and another in Bristol also announced today.

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Preparation underway at Harrogate Convention Centre. Picture: JPI Media/ Gerard Binks

The first NHS Nightingale hospital, at London’s Excel centre, will be officially opened today after being set up in under a fortnight.

The hospitals will open next in Birmingham and Manchester, offering up to 3,000 beds between them if they are needed as the pandemic continues.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “The nation is facing an unprecedented global emergency and we are taking exceptional measures to ensure the NHS has whatever it needs to tackle this virus.

“The NHS and the military have achieved something extraordinary in setting up NHS Nightingale, London in only a matter of days.

Preparation underway at Harrogate Convention Centre. Picture: JPI Media/ Gerard Binks

“It is testament to their hard work and dedication that an additional four hospitals will be rolled out across the nation.

“We must all play our part to assist our heroes on the health and social care frontline and I urge everyone to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.”

Activity could be seen at the Harrogate centre this week, with security guards wearing masks standing by the gates as forklift trucks began to move goods in the car park.

While the NHS only actively confirmed its existence today, the move has been hailed by MP Andrew Jones who said the town is playing an “important role” in the national effort.

Responding to the news of the Harrogate hospital, Sheffield City Region mayor Dan Jarvis said: “The need for the new Nightingale Hospital shows the extraordinary challenge we face to overcome the coronavirus.

"There are sensible and practical reasons why Harrogate has been selected, due to the speed at which the facility can be built and its location central to the whole of Yorkshire.

“In South Yorkshire, we have made extensive preparations, so people receive the very best possible care. I have been assured that all Covid-19 patients who need hospital care in our region will be treated at their local or a neighbouring hospital in South Yorkshire."

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