The first part of a new £334m hospital is preparing to open.
The redevelopment of the Derby City General is one of the biggest hospital building projects in Britain.
The new "super hospital", which will have 35 operating theatres, will cut waiting times and allow more patients to be treated.
All the Derbyshire Royal Infirmary's facilities will eventually be transferred to the new building by the end of 2008.
Part of the Infirmary's London Road site will be sold off some may be used for community health facilities.
The development is on the site of the old Derby City General Hospital.
Other cities hope to implement a similar strategy, with plans to virtually rebuild Leicester's hospitals and Nottingham City Hospital, as well as creating a super hospital for Peterborough.
Project director Brian Ibell said he believed the new hospital would be only the fourth in the country to include a dedicated rooftop helicopter pad, which would be directly linked to the accident and emergency department.
He said: "It's a fantastic development, a world class service that the people of Southern Derbyshire have long deserved."
Consultant urological surgeon Chris Chilton said: "We're really looking forward to offering a very good service in the best of circumstances..."
The changes follow years of cramped and outdated facilities and builders have been working on the project for nearly two years.
The scheme has been funded by the private sector, with the NHS leasing the facility back after 35 years.