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New unit means men stay in Lincs for mental health intensive care

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A year after the county opened its first psychiatric intensive care unit, local health services are celebrating the positive impact it has on mental health crisis care. 

Last July, Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LPFT) with support from South West Lincolnshire CCG opened its new psychiatric intensive care unit, the Hartsholme Centre in Lincoln, providing additional services for men requiring intensive psychiatric care.

Until the unit opened there had been no service of this kind in Lincolnshire, meaning patients and their families needed to travel outside of the county to receive this vital support.

A year on the centre has treated over 100 people and no male patients have needed to travel further to receive this kind of support, greatly improving patient experience and consistency of care.

Patients are also moving back into appropriate local services quicker, meaning they receive the right level of care, at the right time.

The Hartsholme Centre provides a service for male patients experiencing a mental health crisis who need an intensive level of care, and supports them to a greater extent than on mental health wards, such as those at the Peter Hodgkinson Centre in Lincoln and Pilgrim Hospital, Boston.

Tracy Colpitt, Ward Manager at the Hartsholme Centre says staff and patients have been really positive about their first year:

It’s been a fantastic year and a pleasure to be able to provide a service of this kind in Lincolnshire for the first time. Staff have really enjoyed seeing the positive impact they are able to have on a patient’s recovery and that they have plenty of opportunities to spend time providing one-to-one support. Patients tell us they feel safe and cared for and are grateful that they no longer have to travel when they need help of this kind.

The Hartsholme Centre is one of several new mental health services introduced during the last year to reduce people travelling for mental health crisis support and even avoid admission to hospital. The Trust continues to work closely with local commissioners to see what else can be done as part of the Sustainability and Transformation Partnership to deliver the right care, in the right place, closer to home.

Andy Rix, Chief Operating Officer, South Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said:

The psychiatric intensive care unit at the Hartsholme Centre represents a first for the county, and has made a huge difference to Lincolnshire patients, and their families and carers, by enabling them to receive comprehensive care closer to home, something which is key to their recovery. We are extremely proud of the unit’s successes in its first year, it is something we are delighted to be associated with and we look forward to its continuing development in future years.

Dr John Brewin, Chief Executive at Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust added:

If you’re experiencing serious mental health problems, being away from your family network is far from ideal. We want our patients to remain as close to home as possible during their recovery and the Hartsholme Centre and other services such as our psychiatric clinical decisions unit and expanded home treatment teams, have brought us one step closer to achieving this.  It continues to be an exciting time for the Trust and underlines our commitment to providing the highest possible quality of care for the people of Lincolnshire.