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Queen Elizabeth University Hospital

The Queen Elizabeth University Hospital (QEUH) is a 1,677-bed acute hospital located in Shieldhall (Govan) in the south-west of Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom. The hospital is built on the site of the former Southern General Hospital and opened at the end of April 2015. The hospital comprises a newly built 1,109-bed adult hospital, a 256-bed children’s hospital and two major Emergency Departments, one for adults and one for children, in addition to buildings retained from the former hospital. There is also an Immediate Assessment Unit for local GPs and out-of-hours services, to send patients directly, without having to be processed through the Emergency Department.[1]

Queen Elizabeth University Hospital
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde
The entrances to the adults and children's facilities.
Queen Elizabeth University Hospital is located in Glasgow council area
Queen Elizabeth University Hospital
Location within Glasgow
Location1345 Govan Road, Shieldhall, Glasgow, Scotland
Coordinates55°51′45″N 4°20′29″W / 55.862412°N 4.341361°W / 55.862412; -4.341361Coordinates: 55°51′45″N 4°20′29″W / 55.862412°N 4.341361°W / 55.862412; -4.341361
Care systemNHS Scotland
Hospital typeTeaching
Affiliated universityUniversity of Glasgow
Glasgow Caledonian University
Emergency departmentYes (and Major Trauma)
256 Children[1]
Spinal cord injury
Nuclear Medicine
FoundedMay 2015
Other linksList of hospitals in Scotland

The retained buildings include maternity services, the Institute of Neurological Sciences and the Langlands Unit for medicine of the elderly and rehabilitation. The facility is operated by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.[2][3]

While some parts of the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital have their own distinct identity and dedicated specialist staff, such as the Royal Hospital for Children, each is completely integrated with linkages for patient transfer, diagnostic services, emergency care and even a rapid access lift from the emergency helicopter pad on the roof of the adult hospital. For example, the new children’s hospital is not only linked to the adult hospital but also both the adult and children’s hospitals are linked to the redeveloped maternity building and to the Neurosciences Institute.[4]

The hospital hosts services relocated from the Western Infirmary, the Victoria Infirmary including the Mansion House facility, some services from Royal Infirmary and a range of inpatient services from Gartnavel Hospital, Glasgow.[1] In addition, the Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Glasgow, previously based at Yorkhill, was moved to a new building adjoining the adult hospital and renamed the "Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow".

It is the largest hospital campus in Europe.[5][6]



The adult hospital, children's hospital and laboratory buildings were designed by Nightingale Associates,[7] with construction carried out by Brookfield Multiplex, who previously built Wembley Stadium.[8] In 2008, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde submitted a business case to the Scottish Government[9] for a new acute hospital to replace facilities at the Western Infirmary and Victoria Infirmary, and to relocate the Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Glasgow, to a new building adjoining the new adult hospital.[10] Designs were unveiled for the hospital campus in November 2009,[11] with public funding being approved.[12]

At the time of construction the hospital, originally named the South Glasgow University Hospital, was Scotland's largest ever publicly funded NHS construction project,[13] costing £842 million to build.[14] it was built on and around site of the old Southern General Hospital, with construction starting in early 2011. Originally to be called South Glasgow University Hospital,[15] it was granted the right to use the name "Queen Elizabeth University hospital" by Queen Elizabeth II.[16][17] It was originally hoped the new hospital would be ready by 2014,[18] but medical services did not start to be transferred until April 2015, when the first services began being transferred from other hospitals[14] and was fully operational by summer 2016.[19]

As part of the design process, the colour scheme of the hospital was designed to help staff and visitors find their way around. Each floor in both the adults and children's buildings have a clearly identifiable colour and many works of distinctive art are displayed to give useful landmarks which can act as signposts. The use of therapeutic colour schemes throughout the hospital has been carefully selected by interior design specialists to soothe, reduce stress and enhance well being.

A physical above ground link for patients and staff from the main building into the Maternity and Neurosciences Institute buildings was constructed, allowing most of the campus to be traversed without going outside. The main hospital facilities are also linked to the laboratory buildings via an underground tunnel and pneumatic tube system.[2][20]

The retained buildings from the former hospital, notably the Institute of Neurological Sciences, have also started to receive external and internal refurbishment, with the buildings currently in the process of having cosmetic panel cladding applied to the outside in order to bring their appearance in-line with the new hospital buildings. The modernisation plan for the Institute of Neurological Sciences within hospital will cost £40 million.[21]


Services include both adult and children's Emergency Departments, Adult & Paediatric Critical Care, Coronary Care, Immediate Assessment Unit (IAU), Dermatology, ENT, General Medicine (including sub-specialties), General Surgery (including sub-specialties), Medicine for the Elderly (including Assessment, Rehabilitation and Day Services), Gynaecology, Neonatal Paediatrics, Obstetrics, Ophthalmology, Orthopaedic Surgery, Urology, Physically Disabled Rehabilitation and Continuing Care. Other services include Audiology, Clinical Psychology, Dietetics, Occupational Therapy, ECG, Physiotherapy, Radiology (including MRI and CT provision for the general hospital service), Speech Therapy and Clinical Neurophysiology (Including EEG, EMG and evoked potentials).[22]

Adults' hospitalEdit

The 14 floor adult hospital building is one of the largest acute hospitals in the UK and home to major specialist services such as renal medicine, transplantation and vascular surgery, with Critical Care, Theatre and Diagnostic Services.

The adult hospital features 1,109 patient rooms. Rooms within general wards have an external window view. Each room is equipped with private shower and toilet facilities in addition to entertainment such as television and radio. The first floor houses a 500-seat hot food restaurant and a separate cafe. The atrium features shops and banking machines and a lift system that automatically guides users to the lift that will take them to their destination most efficiently.[23]

It is estimated that the hospital serves 41% of Scotland's population.[24]

In addition to a canteen and coffee shop, the atrium in the adult hospital building also contains retail outlets including include: Marks & Spencer; W H Smith; Camden Food co; and Souped Up & Juiced. There are also cash machines located in the hospital.[23]

Children's hospitalEdit

The Royal Hospital for Children, while retaining a somewhat separate identity, is adjoined and integrated with the adult hospital. With 256 beds and five floors, it replaced the Royal Hospital for Sick Children located in Yorkhill, Glasgow.[25]

The children’s facility provides a large number of specialist services to the West of Scotland and the wider population of Scotland in addition to the full range of secondary care services to people of Greater Glasgow and Clyde. Specialist services include: cardiology and cardiac surgery, renal and bone marrow transplantation. For a number of these specialised services, the children's facility is recognised as the sole provider in Scotland.

The building features 244 paediatric beds with a further 12 neonatal beds in the maternity unit next door. The vast majority of the paediatric beds are in single rooms with space for overnight accommodation for parents. The hospital also features a cinema - the Medicinema, Science Centre interactive activity walls funded by the Yorkhill Children’s Charity, indoor and outdoor play areas and a roof garden.

The roof garden play area has been shut for almost a year amid health and safety concerns.[26]

The design includes a part covered roof garden[27] where young patients can enjoy a range of activities in the fresh air including a stage where theatrical productions can be held. There will also be the ability for children to be brought out to the roof garden in their beds. The hospital has a 47-seat cinema, which was built in partnership with MediCinema costing around £250,000 to install.[28] In addition to the 47 seats the facility serves patients in wheelchairs and beds.[29]

The new children’s hospital is a mix of four-bedded and single-bedded accommodation with ensuite.[30]

Institute of Neurological SciencesEdit

The Institute of Neurosciences provides Neurosurgical, Neurological, Clinical Neurophysiology, Neuroradiological, Neuropathology and Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery facilities for the West of Scotland. Attached to the institute is The Queen Elizabeth National Spinal Unit for Scotland which provides a spinal injuries service to the whole of Scotland. This is housed in a purpose-built facility attached to the Institute of Neurosciences.[31]

The institute is where the Glasgow Coma Scale was devised by Graham Teasdale and Bryan J. Jennett in 1974.

Approximately 60% of the unit's workload is emergency care.[32]


NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde has centralised most of its laboratory services at the laboratory and facilities management building. The building hosts medical laboratory space to support blood sciences, medical genetics, medical pathology and microbiology. It also houses the hospitals facilities management offices and staff. The mortuary is also based here and is located in the basement.[33]

The facilities management centre provides a hub for the automated guided vehicles to collect and deliver supplies to, and remove waste from, the hospital.

It is staffed by more than 800 people and processes results from hospitals in the health board area and around Scotland, in addition to undertaking research. The laboratory cost £90M and opened in 2012.[34]

Langlands BuildingEdit

The medicine for the elderly unit is housed in the Langlands Building at the southern end of the hospital campus and contains wards 51 through 57. The building is linked to the rest of the hospital via a link bridge.

Maternity UnitEdit

The maternity unit, retained from the previous hospital, is situated directly across from the children's hospital facilities.


The campus features an "Arrival Square" which is located at the front entrance of the adult hospital and is intended to function as the hospital's transport interchange. With patient drop-off zones, access to bus services serving the city and its suburbs, a boardwalk connecting the adult and children’s hospitals and a taxi stand.[20] Around 90 buses an hour service the facility.[35] 500 bicycle racks are provided for those cycling to the campus.[36]

The nearest train station is Cardonald railway station and the nearest Glasgow subway station is Govan subway station.

The parking arrangements on the site have been criticised by staff as there are currently only around 3,000 free bays for over 10,000 staff.[37]

Automated guided vehiclesEdit

Automated Guided Vehicles charging in the hospital's basement level.

The adult, children and laboratory buildings within the hospital are equipped with a fleet of 26 of automated guided vehicles (AGVs) to carry supplies, using dedicated lifts and a network of underground tunnels.[38]

The dedicated lifts that are used by the robots are separated for clean and dirty goods and travel in non public corridors.[39]

At loading bays located in the basement and ground floor of the laboratory building where goods including kitchen materials, linen and medical supplies are delivered, the AGVs pick up assigned cargo, call a lift and head for the appropriate floor.

The vehicles begin operation when a member of staff scans cargo to be picked up. The AGVs then track their target as they make their way through the hospital. Once an AVG has completed its task it then returns to the charge docking station where it can be fully charged in 30 minutes.

The fleet is estimated to have cost £1.3 million.[40]

"Death Star"Edit

When the hospital opened its doors, locals nicknamed it the "Death Star" due to its star-shaped design, large size and the landing pad for aircraft on the roof.[41][42][43]


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  2. ^ a b "NHSGGC : South Glasgow University Hospital".
  3. ^ "NHSGGC : Directory by Department".
  4. ^ "NHSGGC : About the campus".
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  18. ^ "Super hospital delay 'the new Holyrood'". BBC News. 25 November 2009. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  19. ^
  20. ^ a b
  21. ^ "£40m modernisation announced for Institute of Neurological Sciences". Urban Realm. Retrieved 21 November 2015.
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  23. ^ a b "NHSGGC : Overview".
  24. ^ "Meet the TV stars who will show Victoria Infirmary's move to the new super hospital". Evening Times. 2 November 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  25. ^ "What does new hospital mean for Glasgow?". BBC News. 27 January 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  26. ^ "New Queen Elizabeth University Hospital's play zone is no go area for kids". The Herald (Glasgow). 9 May 2016. Retrieved 8 August 2016.
  27. ^ "State-of-the-art cinema opens in new children's hospital". STV. 5 August 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  28. ^ "Sick kids watch Minions as £250k Medicinema opens at new superhospital". Daily Record. 5 August 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  29. ^ "Yorkhill MediCinema given funding boost". Evening Times. 5 November 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015.
  30. ^ "NHSGGC : Royal Hospital For Sick Children".
  31. ^ "The Queen Elizabeth National Spinal Injuries Unit".
  32. ^ "Institute of Neurosciences". NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
  33. ^ "Laboratory and facilities management building". Retrieved 12 February 2018.
  34. ^ "New £90m lab opens at Southern General Hospital". BBC News. 14 November 2012. Retrieved 12 February 2018.
  35. ^ "Staff at Glasgow's new super-hospital are forced to rent homeowners' driveways to get a parking place". Daily Record. 16 August 2015. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
  36. ^ "Cycling and Walking". NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde. Retrieved 13 November 2015.
  37. ^ "NHS staff anger over parking cuts at Glasgow's new Queen Elizabeth University Hospital". Evening Times. 6 August 2016. Retrieved 8 August 2016.
  38. ^ "New hospital takes delivery of fleet of robot workers". The Herald. 24 April 2015. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  39. ^ "Robots ready to run at Glasgow hospital" (Press release). 22 February 2012. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  40. ^ "South Glasgow University Hospital introduces fleet of robot porters - Daily Mail Online". Mail Online.
  41. ^ Bradford, Eleanor (27 April 2015). "South Glasgow University Hospital welcomes first patients". BBC News. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  42. ^ "£842m ‘Death Star’ hospital opens doors to first patients", National Health Executive, 27 April 2015. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  43. ^ "In-patients in move to new super hospital". Evening Times. 1 May 2015. Retrieved 4 September 2015.

External linksEdit