Work begins to build hospital's £5m breast cancer centre

Staff and patients were on site to see the start of work at Ipswich Hospital's £5.3m breast cancer centre.

Staff and patients were on site to see the start of work at Ipswich Hospital's £5.3m breast cancer centre. - Credit: ESNEFT

The dream of building a dedicated £5million centre for breast cancer patients in Ipswich has taken another step forward, as building works officially begin.

Staff and patients joined building teams to watch the project get underway, with hopes the clinic will open for the first time later this year. 

The centre will bring all elements of breast cancer care under one roof to end patients moving backwards and forwards between departments. 

Patients will be able to be imaged, biopsied and visit their clinician at the same time, and in the same place. 

Nurse specialist Sue Yates said: “This new centre will give patients the environment they need and deserve for their care. A gold standard environment for gold standard care.”

Work has begun on Ipswich Hospital's dedicated breast cancer clinic.

Work has begun on Ipswich Hospital's dedicated breast cancer clinic. - Credit: ESNEFT

The new centre is a partnership between NHS funding from East Suffolk and North Essex Foundation Trust (ESNEFT) and a fundraising appeal called The Blossom Appeal by the Colchester & Ipswich Hospitals Charity.

The appeal is £500,000 from its £1.75m total that will contribute towards the project, with donations contributing towards equipment and furnishings for the centre.

A collection of 1,000 handcrafted blooms raised more than £33,000 for the appeal, with more events planned over the spring and summer. 

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Mandy Jordan, associate director of the Colchester & Ipswich Hospitals Charity, said: “This is an exciting time for the hospital and our many, many fundraisers who have run, cycled, swam, baked, bought and sold and more to make The Blossom Appeal a success.

Staff and patients were on site to see the start of work at Ipswich Hospital's £5.3m breast cancer centre.

Staff and patients were on site to see the start of work at Ipswich Hospital's £5.3m breast cancer centre. - Credit: ESNEFT

“All the charity money will go towards making the centre state-of-the-art. There will be extra equipment, artwork, peaceful indoor spaces and gardens.”

The Breast Care Centre is one of a number of building developments planned for Ipswich Hospital.

Work has begun on building a new urgent treatment centre and emergency department and a new children's unit.

Builders have started work on the new breast cancer centre at Ipswich Hospital. 

Builders have started work on the new breast cancer centre at Ipswich Hospital. - Credit: ESNEFT

Paul Fenton, ESNEFT's director of estates and facilities, said: “We are investing millions of pounds in Ipswich Hospital to make sure patients have the best possible buildings and environments for healthcare.”

Upcoming fundraising activities to raise the final £500,000 include a sponsored hospital hike, an abseil off the maternity building, and an open gardens event.