Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT)’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) was delighted to learn in July 2017 that it had successfully secured £8m funding through Better Care Together to build a new 15-bed inpatient facility on the Glenfield Hospital site. Last week the business case for the new facility was approved by the Trust’s board, and construction will commence towards the end of the year, subject to final approval from NHS England and NHS Improvement, with a view to opening in March/April 2020. The current inpatient unit has been temporarily based at Coalville Hospital since 2015.

The state-of-the-art, purpose-built design will provide a safe, welcoming and positive environment for young people needing inpatient care and for their families. The Glenfield site was identified in the original public engagement in 2014 as the preferred option for the location of a permanent inpatient unit for children and young people, given its central location and the fact that it is well served by local bus routes.

The design of the new 15-bed facility is based on a clinical model developed through engagement with staff, service users and families. This is an increase on the current, temporary, 10-bed provision at Coalville Community Hospital and includes provision for children and young people with eating disorders. Young people have previously had to go out of area for this specialist care.

Locating the new unit on the Glenfield site also means it will be closer to other local mental health services and infrastructure, provided by the Trust, including the Bennion Centre (adult eating disorders) and the Bradgate Mental Health Unit. This brings a number of benefits, including the facilitation of staff training and clinical supervision, as well as support in an emergency. Where appropriate, it will also help to ensure a smooth transition to adult services if required. Moreover, the ‘all age place of safety’ facility (extended and redeveloped in 2017 thanks to funding from NHS England), which accommodates those in mental health crisis while they wait for an assessment, will also be close by, as will the CAMHS crisis resolution and home treatment service. This service provides treatment and support at home for children and young people in mental health crisis and for their families in situations where no physical medical intervention is required, and has been operational since April 2017.

The building design ensures compliance with the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health, the NHS England service specification for CAMHS and eating disorders and NICE guidance. It also meets the requirements of the Royal College of Psychiatry Quality Network for Inpatient CAMHS (QNIC) standards to co-locate CAMHS inpatient services with other acute mental health provision. Plans for the new build have the support of the local Health Overview and Scrutiny Committees. They have been submitted to NHS England and NHS Improvement for final approval by November 2018.

Dr Peter Miller, chief executive at LPT said: “I’m delighted that our Trust Board has given the go ahead to this new development which will help to improve the quality of care we can provide for local children and young people with acute mental health needs. It forms a significant part of our transformation plan for improving access and support. Most importantly, it means we can treat more young people closer to home.”

Paul Williams, head of service for CAMHS said: “We will continue to talk to staff, service users and families about the internal design of the new unit, and will be providing more information and regular updates about the build over the coming months. Look out for details via our website or email us at feedback@leicspart.nhs.uk