MENTAL HEALTH UNIT WILL CLOSE
GOOLE'S Bartholomew House is to close to inpatients in April meaning those needing treatment face an extra 40 mile journey.
The Boothferry Road facility will, however, continue to operate its home treatment service for those suffering mental health problems.
Explaining that the unit was decommissioned as part of plans to modernise and improve services, Lisa Smith, Humber Mental Health Teaching NHS Trust's unit general manager for the East Riding, said: "We've been running a crisis resolution home treatment from Bartholomew House for the past year alongside the inpatient unit.
"Research has shown that being treated at home means that people get better more quickly and are less likely to relapse.
"Being able to stay in a familiar environment with people you know can make a big difference to recovery."
She conceded that home visits were not always appropriate and that people needing residential care would be transferred to units elsewhere - Mill View House in Cottingham, 25 miles away; or Bridlington's Buckrose Ward, 42 miles away.
The plans, revealed on Tuesday, have shaken beliefs that the unit would be safe for another three to five years after a 2007 consultation.
One patient, who spent one month at Bartholomew House last year and asked not to be named, said: "I knew about this when I was in and wanted to get a petition up.
"The place is a godsend for people in Goole and not only is Hull inconvenient, it's not a patch on Barts."
One of the carers protesting the closure, who also asked not to be named, said: "We were told that the new (home treatment) service would run in tandem with Bartholomew House for a period of three to five years until the home service was up to speed and operating.
"The right hand doesn't know what the left is doing."
Goole MP Ian Cawsey, who began lobbying two years ago to keep the inpatient unit open, said: "The deal I brokered on behalf of local users and carers back in 2007 was that the Trust would begin their new intensive home treatment service and run it alongside the inpatient unit.
"They were confident that we would see that their new service was better and that the need for beds would rapidly decline.
"The Trust claim this case has now been made but we have seen no information as to how they reached this conclusion."
A spokesman for the Trust, in defence of the unexpectedly early closure, said: "Having established benefits with modernising services, it seemed appropriate to make these benefits available to all patient sooner rather than later."
Following consultation, which will take place shortly, some staff will be deployed into the new service and others moved to one of Humber Mental Health's acute inpatient units in the East Riding.
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Sunday 19 May 2013
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