Kingsbridge private hospital takes on contract to run Bupa Clinic in Belfast

Pictured on a tour of the new Bupa clinic at Kingsbridge are Mr Ashok Songra, medical director 3fivetwo Group; Sarah Melia, clinics director at Bupa Health Clinics; Alan Cole, head of partnership centres at Bupa Health Clinics; and Dr Suresh Tharma, medical director at 3fivetwo Group

THE Kingsbridge private hospital in Belfast has taken over the contract to run the Bupa Clinic for Northern Ireland, it has emerged.

The Bupa clinic has relocated from its former base on Great Victoria Street to the Kingsbridge on the Lisburn Road, with five of its staff transferring to the new centre, joining eight new GPs and three new health advisers.

And Bupa believes that the relocation to the five-star hospital will significantly increase its capacity and could see turnover double in the next 18 months.

Alan Cole, head of partnership centres at Bupa Health Clinics, said: “We're excited to have moved to this larger world class location and are looking forward to welcoming both existing and new clients through its doors.”

The Bupa clinic is situated in a self-contained area of Kingsbridge Private Hospital, which offers free on-site car parking.

Customers can enjoy a dedicated Bupa Diamond Lounge – a private waiting room with free wifi, daily newspapers, fresh fruit, home-made scones, shortbread and a range of refreshments while they wait for their appointment.

Mark Regan, chief executive at Kingsbridge, which is part of the 3fivetwo Group, added: “Having been a Bupa partner facility for the last seven years, we're delighted to be offering these additional services and welcome the fact that the Bupa Belfast clinic is now based with us.

“Access to Bupa health screening at Kingsbridge ensures that employees and individuals can take stock of their own health. They can also get advice on improvements and, if required, guidance on to a seamless medical pathway should they need onward referral.”

Last October Bupa, one of the UK's biggest private health insurance companies, suspended all referrals to Belfast Trust hospitals due to what is claimed as the lack of appropriate medical negligence insurance at the hospitals.

People with Bupa health insurance were at that stage no longer being referred for treatment at any of the hospitals within the Belfast Trust.

According to Bupa at the time, the reason for suspending all referrals is because the "trust doesn't have the medical negligence insurance necessary to treat private patients at its hospitals".

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