The Aylsham Discharge Suite

Patients at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) are now able to benefit from The Aylsham Discharge Suite thanks to the hard work of modular construction specialists Portakabin.

Used by the nursing staff at the discharge point and for patients leaving hospital to go “one step closer to home”, the building frees up acute bed space and an additional Rapid Assessment and Treatment Centre (RAT) helps with a 15 minute turnaround of A&E cases.

The project came together in just four months and delivered a 20 seat discharge lounge with a full kitchen serving hot and cold food as well as two 4-bed discharge wards for those being returned to care or sheltered accommodation. The building also has two 5-bed wards and two single wards with all the ancillary facilities you would expect including a pharmacy, utility, welfare and staff room, office, sister’s office and two nurses bases. The RAT centre has an 8-bay emergency assessment ward for quick turnaround assessment to ease pressure on A&E.

With almost 1000m² delivered in just four months, the building has meant the Trust has experienced real patient benefits thanks to a modular solution. After sitting on a number of user groups, the Portakabin team were able to design a building capable of taking up to 100 patients per day and would support the hospital in delivered excellent care and give the team space to work designed with HTM and HBN regulations in mind. The RAT centre would help ease pressure on a busy A&E department over winter and also allow for the existing emergency department to be refurbished.

Both projects were very time sensitive and needed a bespoke design which would work long term for the hospital and be multipurpose to allow the board to approve investment. Other suppliers would not commit to the time but the trust recognised the commitment made during the process from Portakabin.