Wilberforce Health Centre sits in a prominent location at the heart of the city centre, and forms the catalyst for the Albion Square development plan. This holistically welcoming scheme includes a considered approach from the surrounding city, through a landscaped public square, into the art strewn semi-public atrium and finally the privacy of the individual clinics. Providing a complex range of healthcare services under one roof, patients’ privacy and dignity were critical design elements, with services provided including Sexual Health and Addictions.

Design Approach

At the start of the project we were appointed as new members of the Hull Citycare team to bring innovative design to their portfolio of future projects.

This developed after the Citycare team visited the Queens Centre for Oncology and Haematology at Castle Hill, Cottingham, Hull, and were sufficiently impressed by the quality of the design and the way in which it had been achieved, that they approached us.

As part of the initial briefing sessions, the team were taken around all the existing disparate stakeholder services and shown videos comprising acutely personal stories, detailing their real experiences. The services being brought together included several contentious ones which had historically struggled to get public support for their re-location to other sites; these included drug addiction, teenage pregnancy and sexual health, in addition to a new walk-in GP service and a suite for a local GP practice re-locating from another city centre site.

The Drug addiction clinic, relocated from the Quays in the centre of Hull, brought issues of service users loitering around the building, waiting their turn to collect prescriptions, as well as having a dispensary service for methadone within the building and the security issues linked to this. Within their clinic, similar security issues applied to those that are inherent in an A & E department, associated with staff safety and client confidentiality.

“The team's vision and thorough understanding of individual tenant and client needs has led to the design and construction of a flagship building that serves the diverse range of clientele to an exceptional standard.”

Chris Long, Area Team Director of North Yorkshire and Humber NHS Commissioning Board

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