News By Month

A NEW ROUTE TO RECOVERY AS MENTAL HEALTH REHABILITATION SERVICE OPENS IN LANCASHIRE

Posted on the 1st April 2022

A mental health Trust has opened its doors to a brand new £9.4m community-facing rehabilitation centre in Wesham, an integral part to its continued rehabilitation and recovery transformation work. 

  

The service - run by Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust (LSCft) - will offer a new mental health pathway that sits between acute care and community living. With 28 beds for people who have been in hospital and need some support to regain skills and confidence, the centre will help people with everyday tasks such as cooking, cleaning and looking after their own health and wellbeing.

Prior to the opening, the Trust ran its mental health rehabilitation service through its Skylark Centre at Royal Preston Hospital. Skylark Centre was purpose built as an interim rehabilitation offering while Wesham was under development. The Wesham Centre moves away from the clinical setting and into a residential community space, a project designed with input from existing service users. This new high-quality environment is a key part in the programme’s success and comfortability of its residents as they work to regain their independence.

Many Skylark residents have now been moved to the new Wesham centre and share their experiences of rehab and recovery so far.

A 48-year-old man under the service for the past seven months said: “I have experienced many challenges in my life surrounding my mental health following a diagnosis of schizophrenia, I have suffered from bereavement and my mental health has been affected to the point I needed professional help to guide me and regain my independence.

“I have received great support at the Skylark Centre, the staff give me gentle pushes of encouragement when I find myself struggling to get out of my room and they are open and honest with me which shows they respect me as a person.

“There is always lots of opportunities to get involved with the groups and activities they provide. I particularly like the walking groups as it gets me outside in the fresh air. I have difficulty engaging in new activities with staff but they listen to me and guide me through it.  The service provides me with coping strategies which I feel is a two way process – they help me and I help them by participating and giving them feedback.”

The new Wesham centre, which will hold 14 males and 14 females, includes treatment rooms, living space, therapy gardens and community café at the entrance. The centre will offer service users a holistic approach including learning opportunities that help lead people towards happier and more fulfilling lives.

The service user continued: “By dipping my toes into new environments it is a safe way to reintroduce myself into the community. Staff have also helped me work around my anxiety and medication which helps me understand that I can make my own decisions about myself and my lifestyle.

“As I continue at the Wesham Centre, I hope to be working side by side with the whole team to increase my inner confidence. I hope to gain more skills through my continued engagement in activities that are meaningful to me and my journey.”

The launch of Wesham Rehabilitation Centre is part of Trust plans to improve its mental health rehabilitation and recovery offering. Transformation work will also see the implementation of dedicated Community Mental Health Rehab and Recovery Teams in key areas across Lancashire and South Cumbria over the next three years.

Joanna Stark, director of operations for the Fylde Coast at LSCft said: “We are incredibly proud to launch this new offering to our service users and to help bridge the gap between acute treatment and re-integrating people back into the community.

“The service will have a positive impact on existing service users and benefit new service users in need of a different kind of support. We aim to help people with long-term mental health conditions, manage their own care and give them back the independence and lifestyle they deserve. 

“Our team and partners have worked incredibly hard over the past two years to open the Wesham Rehabilitation Centre, a service that hopes to involve neighbours when we open our doors for local community events. It’s really important that local residents of Wesham have a say in the new service and an opportunity to get involved in initiatives and programmes with the people living at the centre.

“We hope the Wesham centre will pave the way for future mental health rehabilitation services across the region.”

To contact the centre, please email MovingOn.Rehab@lscft.nhs.uk or telephone 01772 215120