Papworth hospital opens to patients after move to Cambridge

Royal Papworth Image copyright Royal Papworth
Image caption The renowned hospital has been carrying out heart transplants for more than 40 years

The first patients have been admitted to a leading heart and lung hospital as it completes its multi-million pound, 16-mile move to Cambridge.

Royal Papworth Hospital, home to the first successful heart transplant in the UK, is relocating to the city's biomedical campus.

The hospital's former home in Papworth Everard - where it opened in 1918 - will shut for good on 9 May.

Chief executive Stephen Posey said it was a "really proud and exciting day".

The 16-mile move to the site on the southern edge of Cambridge takes place eight months later than scheduled due to concerns about fire safety and cladding.

It will now see a gradual shutting down of departments at the old site over a three-week period.

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Outpatients services will open in Cambridge on Tuesday.

Image caption The new Royal Papworth hospital building in development. Work began in 2015

Surgeons carried out the first operation at the new site on Wednesday - a "percutaneous coronary intervention" where a stent was installed in an artery.

The hospital has moved to one of the largest life science clusters in the UK, alongside the Laboratory for Molecular Biology - known as the Nobel Prize factory - and AstraZeneca's corporate headquarters and research and development centre.

It will have 300 beds, five operating theatres, a critical care unit - and 1,800 members of staff.

Two corridors will connect staff and patients directly to Addenbrooke's Hospital.

Image copyright Papworth Hospital
Image caption The hospital's move from the South Cambridgeshire village of Papworth Everard was delayed by eight months
Image caption Architects HOK led the design for the hospital, working alongside the Royal Papworth NHS Foundation Trust

"We think we can even improve on the great care that we're famous for on the old site," Mr Posey said.

"It's a much better patient environment and our location alongside industry, academia and our colleagues at Addenbrooke's means we can develop treatments."

Papworth Hospital began life as a tuberculosis colony in 1918.

The UK's first successful heart transplant was carried out there in 1979 - and the world's first successful heart, lung and liver transplant in 1986.

It was granted a Royal title by the Queen in September 2017.

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