Frequently Asked Questions

The new building

What is the total number of beds in the new hospital?

There will be a total of 242 beds.  RHCYP will have a total of 163 beds of which 127 will be inpatient beds. 62% of the inpatient beds will be in single rooms.
 DCN will have a total of 67 beds and 88% will be in single rooms. In addition RIE Adult Critical Care will have 10 additional beds that will open to support the neurosciences workload.
CAMHS will have 12 beds, all of which will be single rooms.

Will there be a separate RHSC and DCN building?

There will be one new building incorporating services for Royal Hospital for Children & Young People (RHCYP), Department of Clinical Neuroscience (DCN) and Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).  There will be a total of 62 departments which include clinical, administration and support services, spread over 6 floors.
There will be no separate name for the new building which will be part of the Bioquarter campus. 

dinburgh bioQuarter brings together young, growing, and established life science companies, NHS Lothian's esteemed Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh is situated alongside the world leading University of Edinburgh medical teaching school and many of its research institutes. Over 5,000 staff work at this site with many more people visting here on a daily basis.
Promoting a collaborative environment to ensure that industry, academia, and the NHS work side-by-side. The principal thread running through all its work is to improve the lives of people locally, nationally and internationally, now and into the future.
For more information on the work happening at the Edinburgh BioQuarter visit
Will the wards have new names?
The wards within RHCYP, including CAMHS, will mainly be named after Scottish castles, some will also have a ward number as well:-
  • Castle Mey – PARU
  • Crichton – Surgical Admissions Unit
  • Ward 131 – Paediatric Critical Care
  •  Dalhousie (ward 330) – Medical Inpatient
  •  Tantallon (ward 331) – Surgical Long Stay
  •  Dunvegan (ward 332)  – Surgical Short Stay
  • Borthwick (ward 333) – Neurosciences
  • Lochranza (ward 334)  – Hameatology/Oncology
  • Dirleton  - Medical PIU
  • Melville (ward 30)  - CAMHS
The wards within DCN will be numbered to follow on from the ward numbers in RIE
  •  Ward 130 – Neurosciences (Acute Care)
  •  Ward 230 – Neurosurgery
  • Ward 231 - Neurology

Who will maintain the gardens?

Sedum grass will be used on the “green roof” areas and this needs very little maintenance to ensure it looks good. Our estates staff will ensure the gardens are maintained otherwise.

How many floors are there in the new building?

Six floors in total. A basement, ground floor, four upper floors and a helipad.

Are we moving art such as the stained glass windows from the RHSC to the new site?

Two stained glass windows from Sciennes will be incorporated into the new building; their location will be decided in the development of the arts strategy. The project team will work with staff, patients and charities and use the output from the artists in residence projects to decide what images and artefacts will take the culture of RHSC into the new build.
What other art is being put into the building?
Over £5m has been funded to produce a large number of Arts and Therapeutic Design projects. This programme is charity funded and you can find out more about this programme at the pages.

What will signage be like in the new building?

Signage and wayfinding is integral to the design of the new building.  These designs have been developed by the design team and signage contractor, following a number of workshops with staff, patients and their families and volunteers, using colours, images and names as a means of familiarisation and wayfinding throughout the building. 
The signage is linking with the wall graphics project as part of the ATD programme. 
External signage is also being developed to link to the RIE Campus and Bioquarter.

Does the new building have good natural light?

There will be good natural light throughout the building. HLM architects have ensured that they maximise light to rooms through undertaking extensive daylight analysis. Through this process they have also been able to increase the amount of natural light to patient rooms and communal areas. A skylight runs along the roof of the main atrium which links the RHSC + DCN entrances.
Will there be outside spaces for patient and families to use?
Yes, aswell as the wider BioQuarter seating areas and paths, there will be twelve courtyards and terraces that patients and families will have access to.

How will the temperature be controlled on the site?

Thermal modelling has been carried out and there are strict guidelines in place to ensure the temperatures are maintained to that standard. There will be a combination of natural and mechanical ventilation. There will be windows which can be opened throughout the new hospital.

Will the noise in rooms be controlled?

An acoustician has had an input into the design of the building to ensure that sound levels exceed the standards expected. The new building will use a concrete frame which will help control assist in this.

Will there be waiting rooms?

There will be designated waiting areas throughout the new building.
What catering facilities will be available?
A café is located on the ground floor, offering hot and cold drinks, snack items such as pre-made salad boxes, sandwiches, build your own sandwich, paninis and soup.  Located next door is the Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity (ECHC) shop. 
On the fourth floor there will be a restaurant and coffee bar, with internal and external seating.  The restaurant will provide three types of offerings; a theatre cooking line where dishes will be made to order in front of the customer. This would include for example, meat and vegetarian options of filled omelettes, stir fries, steak sandwiches, hot wraps and pastas in a variety of sauces.  One traditional popular option from a range of dishes such as macaroni cheese, lasagne, burgers, a variety of fish dishes, pies etc. Snack items such as baked potatoes, pre-made salad boxes and sandwiches, soup and paninis.  Traditional breakfast items will also be available.  The coffee bar will provide a hot drinks and cake service.
Vending machines will be available 24/7 on the ground floor at both the RHCYP & DCN entrances and a Vending Bay on the second floor, offering hot and cold drinks and snacks.

Are there any parent common rooms planned for the RHSC areas?

Parents will have access to the play/dining room in each ward, a family support area is planned for the ground floor and a family sitting room on the third floor. The Family Hotel will also provide space for parents to use.

Will there be over-night accommodation for staff to use?

There will be three on-call rooms for staff to access. An operational policy for staff to follow to gain access to these rooms will be agreed. There will be no fee paying accommodation for staff in the building.
Will there be over-night accomodation for patient families?
Within RHCYP there will be a pull-down bed beside each of the inpatient beds.  There will be a Ronald McDonald House that will have 26 family rooms and dining and recreational space for families that are resident and also a day lounge for parents who are resident on the wards.  There is a Family Sitting room on the third floor.  Within Critical Care there are 2 relatives overnight stay rooms.
There is one relatives overnight stay room in Ward 130.

Will there be staff break out areas?

Staff-only rest areas will be incorporated throughout the building. In addition there will be two 'grab and go' facilities, a cafe/shop on the ground floor and a restaurant on the 4th floor which staff can access.

Has a decision been made yet about the name of the hospital?

The name of the hospital/building has not been decided yet.

IHS Lothian

Which companies are involved in IHS Lothian?

IHS Lothian is made up of Brookfield Multiplex Construction Europe Limited (construction), HLM (architects), Macquarie Capital Group Limited (finance) and Bouygues E&S FM UK Limited (Facilities Management provider).

How does the finance for the project work?

The NPD (Non Profit Distributing) model is significantly different from the RIE contract. NHS Lothian will pay our private sector partner an agreed annual fee for 25 years at which point the building will be owned by NHS Lothian.

What is the budget for the new building?

The project’s capital, design and build value is estimated to be between £140m and £165m (excluding VAT).

Will the Scottish Government fund any of the cost of the build?

A significant percentage of the new hospital will be funded by the Scottish Government. Any additional revenue will need to be found from the NHS Lothian financial plan. NHS Lothian is in discussions with other boards to ensure funding of tertiary services.

Will IHS Lothian pay UK Tax?

IHS Lothian will be required under European/UK law to pay relevant taxes.

Who will carry out the maintenance of the new building?

Cleaning, waste management, security, portering and painting and decorating will be provided by NHS Lothian. IHS Lothian will provide the 'hard FM' such as the maintenance of electrical and mechanical services, the external and internal fabric of the building.

Commissioning and service redesign

Why is CAMHS moving from the Royal Edinburgh Hospital?

CAHMS will be better aligned with children’s services because the new hospital will take children and young people routinely up to 16 years old and in some instances up to 18years old. It will allow for a joined-up service, better utilising staff skills and it will offer physical and psychological care under one roof. It will also help to remove stigma which is a key part of the NHS Lothian mental health strategy.

What services will move to accommodate Renal and Transplant Unit?

Discussions are ongoing with Laboratories, eHealth, SNBTS and clinical haematology to accommodate them in alternative suitable facilities.

Will all the equipment be new and funded by Scottish Government?

A percentage of equipment will transfer with services. The detail of this is still to be established and will be part of the commissioning process.

Are the children’s services currently based at St John’s Hospital moving into the new hospital?

No, NHS Lothian has committed to maintaining a 24/7 children’s ward facility at St John’s Hospital. As it does already, this will complement the services provided in the new building.

What is planned for the existing RHSC building?

Once the move to the new building has been completed the site will be sold.

What will happen to the current DCN building?

There are no plans agreed for the future of the current DCN building. It will be considered as part of the master plan for the WGH site which is being developed.

Is there still fundraising to be done?

Not for the building but charities are looking into how they could add value to the building e.g. with the family hotel, artwork etc.
Which charities are supporting the project?
There are a range of chartieis supporting the project in a number of ways.

RIE Campus Developments

What changes are being made to the RIE Emergency Department?

The resuscitation bays need to be moved to allow for the construction of the (two floored) link corridor from the new building into the RIE. The external entrance canopy will also be removed. This work will increase the number of resuscitation rooms and provide new state of the art facilities. During the construction work the RIE ED resuscitation bays have been relocated into the Surgical Observation Unit (SOU) and the SOU will has replacement facilities provided in temporary accommodation.

What is happening with critical care?

There will be 11 new beds added to the critical care department within the RIE for DCN patients. There will be a 16 bedded renal and transplant unit built at the RIE. A first floor link corridor will run between the RHSC and RIE for critical care patients and staff only.

Car parking, roads and travel

What will parking be like once the new hospital is built?

There are already 1,700 parking spaces at the RIE and we are adding an additional 312 spaces (approx). There will be 60 close proximity car park spaces adjacent to the RHSC and DCN building which will be free of charge with access to them managed by NHS Lothian. There will also be 50 secure cycle storage spaces for staff and 18 spaces for the public.

Will there be a place for discharged patients to be picked up?

Yes, the drop off spaces will be controlled by NHS Lothian and will also be able to be used to collect patients.

Will there be anymore car park provision on the RIE site?

Over 300 additional car park spaces will be provided within car park F.

Will there be charges for car parking?

The current car park tariffs will apply. The proximity car parking will be free. There is an established process in place for parents/patients to use that allows them access to free/reduced car parking fees.  The operational procedures for staff accessing parking permits have still to be defined.

Will there be cycle paths and cycle stands near the new hospital?

There will be cycle paths and stands to store bicycles located around the new hospital site. The exact location of these stands is still to be decided.

Will there be enhancement to cycle routes outside the new campus?

The roads out with the campus are controlled by the City of Edinburgh Council.

Last Reviewed: 20/09/2017