No health HQ for Ipswich

IPSWICH looks set to be discounted as a location for the new regional Strategic Health Authority's headquarters.The Evening Star can today reveal that the town was considered as a base for the organisation with an annual budget of £4m, but a former hospital at Fulborn in Cambridgeshire is likely to be chosen.

IPSWICH looks set to be discounted as a location for the new regional Strategic Health Authority's headquarters.

The Evening Star can today reveal that the town was considered as a base for the organisation with an annual budget of £4m, but a former hospital at Fulborn in Cambridgeshire is likely to be chosen.

That is where the SHA has been temporarily based since it was formed in April to replace county-wide health authorities in Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire.

Suffolk Health's offices at St Clements in Foxhall Road, Ipswich and Thingoe House in Bury St Edmunds were considered. However, Ipswich's new Primary Care Trust moved into the former and Suffolk West PCT, together with West Suffolk Hospital and charities share the latter.

The SHA will employ about 70 people and a report states it needs facilities including car parking, coffee points, and an attractive business-like décor.

It also needs 70 workstations, meeting rooms, local housing available for staff, access for shops and low running costs.

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The report, being considered at a public board meeting of the SHA, at the Suffolk Showground in Ipswich this afternoon said renting premises at Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds, Newmarket or Norwich, would cost almost £1m more than at Fulbourn.

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