Staff and patients to benefit as hospital opens new ‘sanctuary’

The new community hub facility at Papworth Hospital. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

The new community hub facility at Papworth Hospital. Picture: CONTRIBUTED - Credit: Archant

A Huntingdon firm has helped to fund a new patient and community sanctuary at Royal Papworth Hospital.

The sanctuary will play a role in determining a patient's suitability to be discharged from the new Royal Papworth Hospital, which moved from its home in Papworth to the Cambridge Biomedical Campus last month.

Co-funded by construction firm Mick George, the new sanctuary project cost about £235,000 to complete.

Historically, a pond at the Papworth Everard setting was used as a novel yardstick in challenging patients to complete two circuits to distinguish if they were 'well' enough to leave the hospital's care.

Now, the new sanctuary, which includes a pond and open green space located to the west side of the hospital, provides beautiful views and a calming atmosphere for both patients and their families, whilst also offering a suitable environment for events.

Maxine Taylor, partnerships manager at Royal Papworth Charity, said: "The community sanctuary project has already begun to help to integrate Royal Papworth Hospital into our new community. The outdoor furniture has added a real sense of community as people have come to gather and enjoy meals, coffees and even take meetings outside.

"We couldn't have delivered this project without the support of the Mick George community fund. Together we have created a place which is welcoming, relaxing and offers a comfortable, safe place for visitors to the site to appreciate."

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While the primary focus of the new sanctuary is to serve hospital patients and families, the new amenity will also contribute to the local art strategy, featuring works of local artists.

Royal Papworth Hospital is the UK's leading heart and lung hospital that treats more than 100,000 patients each year.

Jon Stump, joint chief executive at Mick George, said: "Having been fortunate enough to visit the site during its creation, it's very evident that no stone has been left unturned with regards to ensuring the facility is of extremely high standards. Although early days, the results seem to be fantastic.

"We're very proud to have played a role in helping to produce a vibrant setting that will be used and enjoyed by all patients, staff and visitors to the new Royal Papworth Hospital for generations to come."