Hospital relocation on track

The Longmarket Street building which currently houses the Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital is apparently "on the market".

More than 30 years after being located in the city centre, the Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital is set to relocate.

The hospital, formerly known as City Park Hospital, was founded in 1984, and, in 2001, renamed after the late South African surgeon who is credited with having performed the world’s first successful heart transplant.

According to Chris Tilney, the hospital’s general manager, “the hospital will be situated on the Cape Town foreshore, close to the Cape Town International Convention Centre”.

On the reasons for the relocation, Mr Tilney said: “The hospital has outgrown the facility from where it currently operates and upgrading the current facility would have caused significant disruption and inconvenience to both patients and doctors.

“Its relocation to a new purpose-built building on the Cape Town foreshore will provide patients with easier access to the hospital and has also presented Netcare with the opportunity to incorporate the latest environmental principles into its design, with energy-saving, regenerative technology to ensure future sustainability; effect a more streamlined flow of operations which will offer patients more convenience; and expand the range of services offered at the new premises.

Mr Tilney added: “The new hospital also offers the potential for future expansion, with capacity for up to 375 beds.”

Unwilling to be drawn on the cost of the relocation, Mr Tilney said only that, “Netcare is making a considerable investment in the city of Cape Town”.

The Longmarket Street building, which currently houses the hospital is, according to Mr Tilney, “on the market”.

When asked whether any jobs would either be gained or lost as a result of the move, Mr Tilney said: “ We envisage that the scope of the new development is such that new job opportunities will be created.”

On when the newly relocated facility will be opening its doors, Mr Tilney said: “The hospital is on track to open on Saturday December 3, to coincide with the 49th anniversary of the world’s first heart transplant.”