Critical Care


Our new, world-class Adult and Neonatal Intensive Care Units at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital are now both officially open and can treat more than 2,000 critically ill adults and babies every year.

These new facilities were made possible thanks to the success of our £12.5 million Critical Care Campaign, which launched in 2017. Overwhelming support from our friends, partners and the local community enabled us to reach our three-year fundraising target for the campaign in just two years.

The expansion and redevelopment of our Adult Intensive Care Unit (ICU) has been funded thanks to the incredible support of Julia and Hans Rausing and other generous donors to our Critical Care Campaign.

The first phase of the Adult Intensive Care Unit was fast-tracked and opened in March 2020 to treat the increased number of patients being cared for in our ICU due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Now all the construction phases are complete, the capacity of the new unit has increased by 45%, allowing the Trust to care for an additional 500 patients per year.

We have specifically designed this new unit to create a first-of-its-kind patient-led approach to care, improving the recovery and wellbeing of patients by incorporating the latest innovations and digital solutions that can be personalised to reduce anxiety, pain and stress. The acoustics, lighting, layout and furnishing have all been selected for the patient’s brain, body and senses to rest and heal more effectively.

The patient-focused environment includes, for example, media screens to enable patients to engage with our arts in health programme and stay in contact with family and friends, as well as noise-reducing equipment, and the latest sensor technology to monitor patient progress and recovery.

Our innovative model of care and world-class environment aims to improve clinical outcomes, reduce costs, improve efficiency and reduce risks for our patients. We are constantly collecting and analysing data to evaluate the impact of these environments to build a compelling evidence base, and an optimum template, influencing NHS guidelines and best practice nationally and beyond.

The new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) – made possible by generous charitable support from the Khoo Teck Puat UK Foundation and other generous supporters – creates an optimal healing environment with the latest technology and equipment, bespoke furnishing, specialist lighting and a 40% increase in space, which means the hospital can provide life-saving care to an additional 150 babies each year.

The new NICU has expanded to increase not only the number of cots but also provide additional space and privacy around each one – so staff can treat babies with their parents close by, while also reducing the risk of infection, to which premature babies are particularly vulnerable.

“The expansion of our critical care facilities reinforces the hospital’s reputation as a centre of excellence and innovation. We are proud that we can extend our level of care to help treat more critically ill adults and babies each year.

Lesley Watts, Chief Executive at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

 “We are so incredibly grateful to our friends, partners and the local community who made our shared vision to create these world-class facilities come true. Our new critical care services bring together our core strengths in digital innovation, environment and design, and testing and scaling the latest clinical technologies to provide cutting-edge care to hundreds more patients each year.”

Chris Chaney, Chief Executive at CW+