Theatre 9C, RUH Bath
SR Architects Ltd. was commissioned by RUH Bath NHS Trust starting in mid-2015 to design, tender and administer construction for the refurbishment of a moth-balled obstetrics surgical theatre and associated recovery room within the live working environment of the Maternity Department Surgical Suite at the hospital.
The theatre (one of three) had been closed for nearly a decade and the Trust wanted to increase their capacity for offering elective procedures. The Trust secured the funding necessary to update the air handling system to enable the theatre to function correctly and wanted to update the equipment and internal environments to current standards. The associated 2-bed recovery had not been updated in the same period, so there was a desire to create a fresh environment in this area as well.
In addition to creating the new functional theatre environment, the real challenge for the design team and the hospital operational managers was working out a method for conducting the construction, threading the new air handling ducts and other services through the rest of the larger surgical suite whilst it remained operational on a 24/7 basis. It also became apparent that other upgrades were necessary for some of the areas surrounding the theatre including fire compartmentation. These discoveries led to a more protracted delivery of the project, but has given the hospital a model for updating the other theatres in the suite.
Completed in mid-2017 after a year-long period of funding review and a shift to a phased project delivery to accommodate the construction works in the live working environment, the new theatre has been happily received by the surgical team and the hospital.