One of our region's biggest hospitals is going to benefit from some major rebuilding work - starting next month.
A new surgical centre - including several operating theatres - and acute assessment hub will replace existing buildings at Taunton's Musgrove Park Hospital.
Full planning permission has now been issued by the District Council for both developments, with the NHS Improvement body also giving the green light.
The current surgical site was originally earmarked to be a temporary measure during World War Two - and has remained in use ever since.
Musgrove Park claims the new surgery centre - which will also have a critical unit and endoscopy suite - will improve patient experience, saying the original hospital has been difficult to maintain in recent years.
Initial building work on the site will get underway in mid-August, with the main construction starting in early 2022.
The hospital also says the new acute assessment hub - based near the emergency department - will provide patients faster access to consultants and surgeons.
This part of the development is expected to finish in early 2022.
We're very excited to see the progress being made in two major developments at Musgrove Park - our new surgical centre and acute assessment hub, meaning we can provide care in state-of-the-art facilities.— Somerset NHS Foundation Trust (@SomersetFT) July 14, 2020
You can find out more about the developments here: https://t.co/m378CvVmjI pic.twitter.com/FmwpqFLI2l
Dr Daniel Meron, the hospital's Chief Medical Officer, has welcomed the progress.
He said: "We are excited about being able to care for and treat our patients in state-of-the-art operating theatres and critical care facilities, as well as providing more rapid assessment for patients who need surgery".