That means recognising contractors like BAM, and our supply chain, as valuable partners who bring expertise not readily available in today’s NHS. It means us becoming involved across the whole health economy.
The mind-set must change from seeing us as principally builders appointed for a single building or a group of buildings to seeing us as long-term partners helping deliver service improvement and organisational changes through well-designed, flexible and efficient facilities across multiple sites and providers.
It is that step which will really unlock the untapped potential for innovation and efficiency.
Our partnership with the NHS under the P22 Framework has already resulted in a range of standard room designs, standard assemblies and standard components, free P22 training, a suite of guidance documents covering the use of BIM, pre- and post-occupancy evaluation and Government Soft Landings (GSL). Millions of pounds of project savings prove that this behind-the-scenes work delivers.
Engaging us earlier would accelerate the scale of these benefits.
We know how to design, cost and construct healthcare facilities. Involving us from the very start would only add further value and reduce abortive work.
Trusts should embed their construction partner and our supply chains post-SOC (strategic outline case) into their project teams. We would provide valuable early advice on construction risk, sequencing and buildability, modern methods of construction and cost information based on actual outturn costs.
Trusts would have greater cost certainty, with open book accounting and more innovative solutions, plus closer alignment with their clinical requirements, and more realistic and productive programmes.
Working together in a spirit of mutual trust and co-operation to understand what is affordable at an early stage is surely better than discovering too late stage that a project is unaffordable?
Within the construction industry the end user benefits of early involvement have long been recognised.