A £2.6 million project to create a new drug trial unit at The Royal Marsden in Surrey continues to make great progress.
The Royal Marsden is a world-leading cancer centre with an international reputation as a centre of research excellence, with an established record in developing new cancer treatments and improving the outcomes of adults and children with cancer.
The Royal Marsden has a large and comprehensive portfolio of clinical research. As the only specialist Cancer NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, it is able to conduct complex clinical trials, and develop novel technologies and therapies for patients, based on the latest ground-breaking science in basic and applied cancer research.
The Centre’s research strategy is underpinned by heavy investment in leading-edge equipment, facilities and imaging technologies, which allow us to carry out research that other institutions cannot. This keeps the Centre at the forefront of cancer research and, ultimately, patient care.
The new West Wing Clinical Research Centre is an example of the continual investment in research infrastructure. The centre enables the rapid and effective translation of scientific findings regarding the genetic and molecular basis of cancer into improved targeted therapies, which is central to the personalised medicine strategy.
Work on the West Wing Clinical Research Centre began in June 2013 and is scheduled to open to patients in March 2014. The new unit replaces an existing ward and once work is complete will provide facilities for day patients on drug trials.
Logan Construction (South East) Ltd is the main contractor on the project, whilst Ansell and Bailey is providing all architectural services. Logan Construction (South East) Ltd is a principal contractor providing complete and cost effective building solutions, whilst Ansell and Bailey is a firm of chartered architects, specialising in health care, education, commercial, sports and leisure projects.
Mo Bahrami is the Projects & Property Manager for the works at The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust. Mo works for the Trust overseeing projects for sites in Sutton and Chelsea.
Discussing the current project, Mo said:
“The West Wing Clinical Research Centre project comprised the complete refit of an existing ward. The ward was completely gutted – stripping the unit back to just the floor, ceiling and external walls – and then fitted with new rooms, services and medical equipment.”
The newly constructed West Wing Clinical Research Centre at The Royal Marsden enhances research capacity by providing a dedicated space for complex clinical trials. The purpose built facility increases capacity for delivering efficient, high quality clinical trials, in an exclusively research-focussed environment.
“The West Wing Clinical Research Centre includes consulting rooms, labs, kitchens, training facilities and associated areas, whilst facilities include patient entertainment such as TV channels and internet access. Everything that has been installed within the ward is brand new.”
Whilst work continues on the project, the rest of the hospital remains open, so the ward has been sectioned off from patients.
“We have closed the doors at either end of the corridor, with access provided through a large window. Outside we have scaffolding and stairs, with the construction compound located around the unit.”
The new ward is located on the first floor of the hospital. Services are being installed, along with air conditioning, heating and the first fix mechanical and electrical works.
“No project runs smoothly, as there are always going to be aspects of the work that you can not anticipate, but so far this project continues to make great progress and we have not encountered any major problems. We have a great contractor in Logan Construction (South East) Ltd and equally great architect in Ansell and Bailey.”
“At present I am project managing many projects across both our Sutton and Chelsea sites. Not all of the projects are as large as this, but they all require input, so it is a big task.
“Every single project that I am involved with at the hospitals is a different challenge for me. There are no two projects that are the same. The people I deal with, from consultants, to surgeons and nurses are all very good at their professions, so to be able to bring all these people together and provide a unit which will be hugely beneficial is a really great achievement for me.”
For more information on The Royal Marsden, please visit: www.royalmarsden.nhs.uk.