The NCH project represents a ‘once-in-a-lifetime opportunity’ for all those involvd in its design and implementation. Encompassing two new paediatric outpatient and urgent care centres as well as the NCH on a campus shared with St. James’s Hospital, it is the most significant capital investment projects ever undertaken in healthcare in Ireland and is a core part of our transition to a new model of care for paediatric services.
To achieve this, the NPHDB set the vision to create “one of the finest children’s hospitals in the world” – an aspiration which recognises the importance that the building itself can play in supporting the work of clinicians and creating an environment that is welcoming to children and their families and makes a real long-term impact on health outcomes.
The design concept gives the new hospital a strong identity that is unlike any other hospital. Deliberately so, as the intention is to break with the institutional mould of traditional hospital designs and create an innovative environment – one that not only meets the highest clinical standards but is also uplifting, engaging and child and family-centred.
The design, now completed in detail and under construction, evolved out of extensive dialogue with many stakeholders, including staff from the three children’s hospitals, with families, young people and children who are former or current users of the service, and with local residents and businesses. This process, which also fostered integration and alignment of new ways of providing clinical care, has led to the development of a world class building, expressly designed for staff to deliver the best possible clinical care for children and young people. The design also maximises the therapeutic benefits of outdoor space, daylight, natural ventilation, and break-out spaces for patients, families and staff that offer opportunities for learning, play and distraction as well as respite from the clinical environment. The entrances lead directly into the hospital from the LUAS, the South Circular Road and the underground car park will make access as convenient as possible for patients, visitors, and staff.