The first phase of the new Health Innovation Campus at Lancaster University is now complete, and ready to open in September.
The landmark Health Innovation One building is the new home for Lancaster University’s Medical School and Division of Health Research – while offering space for external organisations to co-locate and work on site with the University on significant health challenges.
As well as teaching, offices, and shared work space facilities, the new building features various meeting rooms and event spaces – including a dedicated Innovation Lab and Business Lounge. The new on-site café – HIVE – will include a menu focussed on fresh food and healthier options, while still being affordable for those on a budget.
Professor Jo Rycroft-Malone, Dean, Faculty of Health and Medicine, said, “The Health Innovation Campus will create a dynamic, health-focussed community at Lancaster University - where health and care research, innovation and medical education are at the forefront of the agenda.
“The new building has state-of-the-art teaching facilities, including a simulated hospital ward in our Clinical Skills Centre and cutting-edge anatomy suite. This development will really set Lancaster Medical School apart by enabling students to work alongside industry.”
To mark the completion of the building by BAM Construction, Vice-Chancellor, Professor Andy Schofield, was given a tour of the campus, along with VIP guests representing contributing agencies, David Read for the European Regional Development Fund and the Chair of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, Steve Fogg.
Professor Schofield said, “The Health Innovation Campus is a project of strategic importance for Lancaster University. It will provide a cutting-edge facility for our medical students, a home for the Division of Health Research and an exciting innovation hub, where academics will work with cross-sector partners on systems and products which improve health outcomes.
“The strategy for the new campus has been developed in line with the aims of the UK’s Industrial Strategy and the NHS long-term plan, and fits in with Lancaster’s civic commitment to its region.
“The University has been working on this important initiative for a number of years now and I am delighted to see the first phase now complete, at a time when working together on projects aimed at improving health is more important than ever.”
Covid-19 restrictions mean the planned opening for many staff and co-locating businesses has been delayed. However, some teaching will begin to be delivered in the new building from September – with other activities coming on-line as circumstances allow.
As restrictions are lifted, a regular programme of events will see members of the HIC community invited to attend and discuss health challenges and potential solutions – with opportunities for funding and collaborative project work also on the agenda. Plans are also in place to introduce various workplace wellbeing initiatives for employees and tenants based at the HIC, to encourage healthier, balanced lifestyles.
Dr Sherry Kothari, Director, Health Innovation Campus, said, “As the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted, health is our collective responsibility and there has never been a more opportune moment to focus on health and wellbeing. By fostering cross-sector, multi-disciplinary and multi-agency collaboration, the campus will take a lead in maximising impact at scale, regionally, nationally and internationally.”
Development of the new campus has been supported by a £17m contribution from Lancashire Enterprise Partnership's Growth Deal programme, as well as the European Regional Development Fund.
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