Health chiefs gave a first look inside Orkney’s new hospital yesterday.
The new Balfour Hospital in Kirkwall is to replace the 48-bed hospital of the same name and is to deliver high-class facilities for clinicians and medical professionals to provide adequate services to patients and visitors.
The hospital, situated on the mainland of the Orkney Isles, has been constructed by building firm Robertson and is weighing in at a cost of around £64million.
Staff from NHS Orkney have been granted access to the building over previous months to ensure equipment and systems are up and running to standard ahead of the official opening.
NHS Orkney’s chief executive, Gerry O’Brien said: “It is hugely exciting to be able to show off this fantastic new facility. Scores of people have worked incredibly hard to bring this building to life and I am incredibly appreciative of their hard work.
>> Keep up to date with the latest news with The P&J newsletter
“Staff orientation sessions have been a great success and we’re all looking forward to the public open days. Behind the scenes, the project team are working on every detail to ensure our move from the existing hospital next month goes as smoothly as possible.”
Ian Kinniburgh, chairman of the NHS Orkney health board, added: “People in the county have long been waiting for this new hospital and I am personally delighted that we’re getting the chance to give them their first glimpse of it. This building will provide state of the art care for patients across Orkney for generations to come.”
Budding artists have also been contributing to the decoration of the central hub space within the reception area of the new hospital.
Yesterday, regional MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston said: “I am, like I’m sure all Orcadians are, excited that we’ll soon have a fit-for-purpose hospital serving our people and, for our NHS staff, a modern facility to work in.
“The old Balfour Hospital served Orkney well, even if I don’t altogether cherish my childhood memories of having to visit for injections or to have a foot injury treated. However, despite the facilities growing outdated and change much needed, you always felt you were in safe hands and received good care.
“The new Balfour Hospital has a lot to live up to and I wish it well it doing just that.”