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Community and mental health services for Southampton, Portsmouth and parts of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.


Centre of excellence set to transform rehabilitation for patients across Southampton

Members of the public are being asked for their views on a new state-of-the-art rehabilitation unit planned for Southampton.

The 50-bed unit, based at the Western Community Hospital off Tebourba Way, will provide purpose-built accommodation to help patients get back to health as quickly as possible.

Images of the £19.5m scheme, including artist’s impressions and proposed floor plans, were unveiled in an online exhibition today (Wednesday, 19 August), before Solent NHS Trust submits a formal planning application.

The new wing will enable a greater number of people to be cared for in fresh, modern facilities – enhancing the patient experience and providing an improved working environment for staff.

It will replace two existing rehabilitation wards at the Royal South Hants Hospital also in Southampton – increasing beds from 43 to 50, as well as doubling the number of single rooms with en-suite facilities.

Drawings showing how the unit could look are being shown as part of an online public engagement exercise, which will be live for two weeks.

Local people will be able to look at the proposed design at and be able to submit comments or ask questions.

Due to current COVID-19 restrictions, Solent NHS Trust, which provides community and mental health services, is holding an online engagement exercise rather than a public event.

Sue Harriman, Solent NHS Trust Chief Executive, said: “This exciting project will centralise and future-proof our rehabilitation facilities, allowing our expert staff to continue providing great care right in the heart of our community.

“We want patients, their families, staff and the wider community to take a look at our plans and help us shape them as we move through the planning process to ensure we build the best facility we possibly can.”

A 2015 review into the condition and use of NHS hospitals across Southampton found some facilities could be better used. These included both the Western Community Hospital, owned by Solent NHS Trust, and the Royal South Hants, owned by NHS Property Services.

With too few rehabilitation beds in Southampton to meet future health requirements, a plan was developed to demolish a single-storey ward, currently being used as office space, at the Western and replace it with a modern purpose-built unit, allowing care to be centralised rather than run across two separate sites.

The new unit should also help reduce admissions to University Hospital Southampton and free up vital space at the Royal South Hants – providing huge benefits for the wider health system as well as the local community.

Clinical staff, patients and carers have already had considerable input into the plans, which will use greenery and natural light to boost morale and aid recovery.

People have until Wednesday, 2 September 2020 to give their views via the online exhibition, which also includes a short video introducing the scheme and a chance to submit questions to the design team.

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