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School girl meets Prime Minister to present £40m Norwich hospital vision

PUBLISHED: 10:01 26 February 2020 | UPDATED: 10:13 26 February 2020

Prime Minister Boris Johnson meets Lila Patel, from Norwich, a winner of the NHS School Art Competition in the State Rooms inside No10 Downing Street. Picture by Andrew Parsons / No10 Downing Street

Prime Minister Boris Johnson meets Lila Patel, from Norwich, a winner of the NHS School Art Competition in the State Rooms inside No10 Downing Street. Picture by Andrew Parsons / No10 Downing Street

Picture by Andrew Parsons / No10 Downing Street © Crown Copyright, 2020. This image is for Editorial use purposes only. The Image can not be used for advertising or commercial use. The Image can not be altered in any form

A nine-year-old girl has presented her vision to the Prime Minister on how £40m should be spent on a new hospital in Norwich.

Lila Patel, who attends Salhouse Primary School, won the Your NHS competition for her design of the proposed new Hellesdon Hospital at the Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust (NSFT).

Robot doctors, mobile devices doing x-rays and an automatic cast wrapper were among the ideas she suggested in her shortlisted drawing.

She was chosen from 70 entries from across Norwich and met the Boris Johnson. She also won £500 of art vouchers for her school.

Lila said: "I can't believe I've won the Our NHS art competition. I really love drawing, and it was so much fun imagining what my local hospital could look like in the future.

"The NHS makes me feel safe and loved because it helps all of us so much when we are sick."

In August the government announced it would give the trust £38m towards building a modern unit to relocate four of its current wards.

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In addition, a fifth 16-bed ward would be built, increasing capacity to 80 beds. The trust said the additional space will reduce the number of patients sent outside of the area for treatment.

Robert Leaver, Year 3 and Year 4 teacher at Salhouse Primary School, said: "We are very excited for Lila and proud of her achievement.

"We used this competition as an opportunity to learn about the history of the NHS and its importance to our community.

"Children came up with lots of good ideas for the healthcare of the future, and we hope to see their ideas realised in the future."

The competition, supported by the Department of Health and Social Care and the NSFT who invited all primary schools in Norwich to be draw their ideal hospital.

Among the judging panel were Jonathan Warren, NSFT chief executive, Rachel Allen, gallery assistant at Mandell Art Gallery and Malcolm Cudmore, an artist and tutor at Black Dog Arts,

Mr Warren said: "It's clear that the NHS means so much to the community in Norwich and this was a great way of inspiring the next generation who will ultimately help drive the NHS forward.

"With energy and ideas like Lila's, we will be in good hands."


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