A brand-new health and care centre is taking shape in the heart of Ilford.
Work started in January on the new centre – earmarked for two floors in Ilford Exchange shopping complex – and last week local NHS leaders were given a tour of the site, where construction teams are currently fitting out the clinical rooms, waiting area and reception.
Designed to act as a ‘one stop shop’ providing easy access to a range of healthcare, social care and community services in a single central location, the Ilford Exchange Health Centre will create extra capacity for GP services to meet growing local demand.
It will also offer blood testing and podiatry services, care for people with long term conditions, mental health support, children’s services and adult social care.
During a site visit, Zina Etheridge, Chief Executive Officer at NHS North East London (NHS NEL), and Matthew Trainer, Chief Executive at Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust, were among NHS leaders updated on the project’s progress.
Also among the group was, Tracy Rubery, Director of Partnership, Impact and Delivery: Redbridge at NHS North East London, who said: “It was great to see that this fantastic new centre is now taking shape after months of planning and consultation with local people.
“Providing a range of health and care services in one place, right in the heart of the community, will make an enormous difference to so many people’s lives both now and in the future. It will be a huge asset to people in Ilford and the surrounding area.”
Last year, nearly 1,000 people took part in a public consultation on the centre with the vast majority backing the plans. The feedback received has been carefully considered by NHS North East London, NELFT NHS Foundation Trust and the London Borough of Redbridge, in close collaboration with other organisations which are all working together as part of the Redbridge Place-Based Partnership to ensure the new centre meets local needs.
Following a public vote in July, people in Redbridge chose Ilford Exchange Health Centre as their preferred name for the new centre from a shortlist of seven. Over the coming weeks, construction teams will continue to progress the works and the centre is expected to open in spring 2024.