A special ceremony was held to mark the laying of the foundation stone for the new emergency hospital being built at Cramlington.
The Duchess of Northumberland was joined by a group of teenagers to mark the latest stage in the Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital, which will be the first dedicated emergency care hospital with specialists working 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Specialists in a broad range of conditions will be on call through the night to treat patients referred to them from emergency care.
The £75m hospital, part of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s £200m investment in healthcare for Northumberland and North Tyneside, is expected to be completed by summer 2015.
At a takeover day held by the trust last November, young people voted for a name for the paediatric unit in the new hospital and outlined how it should look and feel, as well as what information young people should receive about going into hospital.
And they were on hand last Friday to tell the Duchess about their ideas.
Project director Birju Rana said: “This hospital will be the first of its kind in the country with consultants working seven days a week to provide the best possible care for seriously ill or injured patients.
“The building is now starting to take shape and we are delighted that the Duchess of Northumberland laid the foundation stone that will mark a new era in the way we deliver emergency care.”