6th May 2009 - 00:00
Medirest, part of Compass Group UK & Ireland, has won a Â£17 million, five year contract to supply patient meals at Southampton's teaching hospitals.
The caterer has signed an agreement to operate additional retail outlets throughout the teaching hospitals, worth up to Â£2m per year in revenue. The main benefit for patients is that freshly prepared meals will be steam cooked close to the bedside in remodelled ward kitchens, and patients can have a hot meal at a time that suits them. This means patients will no longer have to miss a meal if they are receiving treatment away from the ward. By using Steamplicity, Southampton hospitals will reduce the amount of food wastage, and also cut power consumption by up to 50%, helping the Trust to achieve its environmental targets. Meanwhile the Eaterie restaurant will operate as normal for staff and visitors at Southampton General Hospital, as will Zara's at the Princess Anne. However, both restaurants will benefit from major refurbishments as part of the improvement project. The level of investment the Trust makes in its catering service will remain the same, but Medirest will meet the cost of overhauling the restaurants and meeting ever increasing national standards and patient expectations. Steve Cenci, business director of Medirest, said: "Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust is one of the largest acute trusts in England and securing the patient feeding contract and extensions to our cleaning and retail contracts is a significant achievement for our team. "The comprehensive assessment process demonstrated that Steamplicity will deliver much improved nutrition for patients, as well as reduced wastage and energy costs for the Trust. We are very proud to be able to extend our association with SUHT." Medirest already provides cleaning services across all sites and operates some retail outlets in the main entrance of Southampton General Hospital.