‘Boutique’ hospital to boost jobs marketBy Natalie Slater
December 15, 2010
Hundreds of new jobs will be created in Reading with the opening of a new ‘boutique’ hospital on the A33.
Circle, a private patient facility, secured £50 million funding last week and is due to start building the new premises in a matter of weeks.
With five operating theatres, 30 in-patient beds and 18 day-patient beds, the hospital is expected to offer a range of treatments to both NHS and private patients in state-of-the-art luxury surroundings.
Planning permission was granted on the Southside site, opposite the Hilton, back in 2008 and the hospital was initially due to open at the beginning of this year, but Circle was unable to get funding when the credit crunch hit and had to push back the opening to autumn 2012.
Circle is owned and run by its employees and aims to complement NHS hospitals.
Patients in the town will be able to choose whether to be treated there or at Royal Berkshire Hospital.
Circle hospitals are managed by the clinicians and the company cites its aim as making most of its decisions on the frontline without “the endless escalation and administration common in healthcare”.
Ali Parsa, Circle’s managing partner, said: “Circle was founded to redefine healthcare delivery in this country.
“Patient and GP reaction to our first hospital – CircleBath – has been phenomenal. We have now set our sights on transforming the hospital experience and quality of care available to patients in Reading.”
The catering will be on par with the service at the Bath hospital where the hospitality aspects of care are delivered by a team of former five-star hoteliers and the food is cooked by a chef from a Michelin-starred restaurant.
Reading will be a bigger hospital than Bath, which has 200 members of staff.
The site was purchased by the real estate arm of BP’s pension fund, Ropemaker Properties, which will also be financing the construction.
Tim Hayne, of Ropemaker Properties, said: “We are very pleased to be able to facilitate the development of the latest Circle hospital.”