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25 May 2023

Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Steve Barclay gave a statement in the House of Commons today on the progress of the Government's New Hospital Programme and reiterated their commitment to deliver the schemes, which include a brand new Emergency Department and Critical Care Unit at Dorset County Hospital.

Matthew Bryant, Chief Executive of Dorset County Hospital, said:

“We are delighted that the government has announced its continuing commitment to the Dorset County Hospital scheme as part of the New Hospital Programme.

This development is very important for the population of Dorset and will deliver a state of the art Emergency Department and an expanded Critical Care Unit in Dorchester for patients most in need of life saving care. There will also be improved facilities for those with mental health conditions, people in need of rapid assessment and for children.

Our scheme is progressing well and we are about to start enabling works on site, which will include the demolition of the old Damers School. Our full business case will be submitted this autumn, with main construction due to begin in early 2024 subject to final approval.

All of this means it’s an exciting time for the team at Dorset County Hospital. This expansion will improve care for patients and help us attract and retain staff who want to provide high quality specialist healthcare in modern facilities”

Read more about plans for our new Emergency Department and Critical Care Unit.

Artist's impression of the new Critical Care Unit and Emergency Department