Work begins on £16m NHS hospital upgrade

Interserves John Gittins with NHS trust chief executive Rob Webster.
Interserves John Gittins with NHS trust chief executive Rob Webster.
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Building work has started on £16m worth of upgrades to the district’s mental health hospital.

A ground breaking ceremony has been held at Fieldhead Hospital in Wakefield, where two wards and an elderly inpatient unit are being redeveloped.

Parts of the hospital are being demolished and new wards will be built as part of the two-year project commissioned by South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

Interserve Construction is carrying out the work, which includes new visitor areas, therapeutic areas, en-suite bathrooms and relaxation spaces to help patients with their recovery.

Trust bosses said the project would improve the hospital as a place to work for its staff.

Chief Executive Rob Webster said: “This is a big investment by the trust which shows our commitment to delivering high quality services to our communities.

“As a trust we aim to be outstanding, so the modernisation of our main Fieldhead site is vital.

“This work will improve the experience of people, enhancing privacy and dignity and creating a more suitable environment at a time when people can feel vulnerable.

“It’s great to be working with Interserve who have delivered improvements for us in the past.

“Together we will build something that helps improve outcomes for local people.”

South West Yorkshire said it was funding the project from its own capital budget.

Work is expected to be completed by late 2018.

Interserve’s John Gittins said: “We are pleased to be involved with a scheme that will take the quality of mental health care services in the region to a new level.

“We have a long-standing collaborative relationship with the Trust who are forward thinking, and we look forward to further strengthening this as they continue to invest in their facilities.”

Specialist treatment wards help people in a mental health crisis:

Building work at Fieldhead Hospital includes the redevelopment of its Priory and Trinity wards and the Chantry Unit.

People who are in a mental health crisis and are not safe to live at their homes are cared for at the Priory ward.

Staff help patients come up with coping strategies to tackle their problems and use relaxation methods including tai chi and swimming.

The Trinity ward is an inpatient unit for people aged between 18 and 65 who cannot be cared for in other NHS facilities.

It includes a 14-bed psychiatric intensive care unit for people who have usually been detained under the mental health act.

The ward’s therapy team use physiotherapy, mindfulness gym sessions, hydrotherapy, gardening and arts and crafts to help patients recover.

The Chantry Unit provides assessment and treatment for people aged 65 and over.

The mixed-sex unit also helps working-age adults experiencing the early onset of dementia.

The facilities are being redeveloped by Interserve Construction.