1. ITV Report

Coronavirus hospital to be built in Bristol to treat West Country patients

A makeshift NHS hospital will be built at the University of the West of England in Bristol to treat patients with coronavirus.

A new NHS hospital is to be built in the West Country to treat up to 1,000 patients with coronavirus.

The facility will be built at the University of the West of England (UWE) in Bristol in the coming weeks.

It will form part of the new NHS Nightingale hospitals, which include one already built in London, and two that are due to open in Manchester and Birmingham.

NHS Chief Executive Sir Simon Stevens said the hospital in Bristol will serve patients across the South West.

It’s nothing short of extraordinary that this new hospital in London has been established from scratch in less than a fortnight.

The NHS, working with the military, has done in a matter of days what usually takes years.

Now we are gearing up to repeat that feat at another four sites across the country to add to the surge capacity in current NHS hospitals.

We're giving the go ahead to these additional sites, hoping they may not be needing but preparing in case they are. But that will partly depend on continuing public support for measures to reduce growth in the infection rate by staying at home to save lives.

– Sir Simon Stevens, NHS Chief Executive

The Nightingale hospitals are part of a nationwide effort to respond to the coronavirus outbreak.

Beds being built at the newly-built NHS Nightingale facility in London. Credit: PA

According to the latest figures, more than a million cases of the virus have been registered around the world.

In the UK, 34,000 people have now tested positive for Covid-19 while nearly 3,000 people have died.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the makeshift hospitals will “ensure the NHS has whatever it needs to tackle the virus”.

It is testament to their hard work and dedication that an additional four hospitals will be rolled out across the nation. We must all play our part to assist our heroes on the health and social care frontline and I urge everyone to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.

– Matt Hancock, Health Secretary

Tim Bowles, who is the Mayor of the West of England, praised UWE for stepping forward in response to the “nation’s time of crisis”.

“While we all hope these bed spaces won’t be needed, it is absolutely right that we should be prepared,” he said.

“We all have to do our bit to prepare, and for the majority of us, that is staying at home to stop the virus spreading. However, some are able to do more, and I’m very grateful to the University of the West of England for stepping forward in such an important way in response to the coronavirus pandemic.”

Coronavirus: Everything you need to know