Healthcare consultancy Essentia supports Evelina Children's Hospital

08 February 2019 4 min. read
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Evelina Children’s Hospital has contracted consultancy Essentia to help manage the refurbishment of two new wards in the institution. Essentia was recently named as one of 80 firms to have won a place on the NHS’ Health Systems Support Framework.

The National Health Service faces a number of key challenges in the coming years if it is to continue supplying keystone services to the ever-changing needs of the population. While key demographic shifts have put certain aspects of the service under strain, funding cuts have also rocked the NHS, and made it more important than ever that projects to improve its facilities are delivered on time and on budget. To that end, consulting work in the public health system is booming, with external expertise regularly tapped by NHS Trusts keen to deliver quality care and find efficiency savings at the same time.

Evelina London Children's Healthcare is the second largest provider of children's services in London. A part of Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, the group looks to provide world leading, life-changing care for children, young people and their families. At the start of 2019, the entity announced the completion of a complex refurbishment project to create a specialist unit for children requiring long-term ventilation care at its Children's Hospital in London’s St Thomas’ Hospital, with its original facilities dating back to the 1860s.

The hospital now boasts two specialist wards for the provision of expert care, following a project managed by healthcare consultancy Essentia. Like Evelina London Children’s Healthcare, Essentia grew out of the Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust. Launched in 2013, the firm is wholly owned by the Trust, and combines commercial focus with public sector values by investing its profits back into the UK’s celebrated health service. The firm’s 75 employees provide consultancy services, working with clients on strategy and estate development.

Healthcare consultancy Essentia supports Evelina Children's Hospital

Following the work, the new Snow Leopard ward now provides 11 highly-specialised patient bed spaces for the Evelina Children’s Hospital, catering to the needs of patients who, once stabilised, need a transition space that allows them and their families to lead as normal a life as possible, before they can transfer back home. While the Snow Leopard project was at its mid-point, the clinical team also asked Essentia to work on a new Children’s Ambulatory Unit called Snow Fox, a clinical facility with 19 clinical spaces.

Snow Fox now meets the demand for increased paediatric capacity, particularly during winter pressures, after Essentia’s expert team provided project management for both projects from start to finish, managing contracts and relationships in the process. The consultancy worked closely with clinicians and nurses to ensure that the ward met the requirements of staff and patients. It was also responsible for managing a strong design team and contractor procurement process and supervising the main contractor, while overseeing planning to see that the refurbishments did not disturb busy clinical areas.

Dan Humphries, Senior Project Manager at Essentia, commented on the successful project: “Snow Fox has the capacity to care for an additional 250 paediatric patients each week, relieving significant pressure on clinical services as well as caring for children. Snow Leopard, meanwhile, has been designed to enable parents to sleep in the same room as their children, so that they don’t need to be separated. It also has wonderful shared spaces and a children’s playroom, but all designed so that medical equipment is not obtrusive or obstructive.”

Essentia recently won a place on a national consulting framework, which was aimed at making it easier for NHS Trusts and other public sector bodies to procure experts on property and estates strategy. The firm was joined by 79 other consulting firms, IT consultancies, system integrators, healthcare specialists and other professional services providers on the Health Systems Support Framework.