Mersey Care NHS Trust Time Project

Mersey Care NHS Trust has commissioned a set of programmes to follow the redevelopment of their mental health services.
This is the first programme we have made for Mersey Care and outlines how the Time Project began and what they will achieve in the future.
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Mental Health Care in Liverpool, Sefton and Kirkby  is changing ... for the better.

One in four people are likely to experience a mental health problem during their lifetime  and
some of them will need care within an inpatient setting, or support from local mental health community teams.

The improvement of care for these people has always been a core principle of the Mersey Care NHS Trust.

Formed in 2001 as a specialist Mental health and Learning Disability Trust, the Trust inherited poor buildings with over half of the in-patient wards pre-dating the formation of the National Health Service.

An assessment at the time found up to three quarters of the Adults mental health service was unfit for purpose and needed a complete transformation.

Services for people like Sean who has lived for many  years with mental health issues and  experienced in-patient care delivered in buildings that were not suited to a modern, therapeutic philosophy.

Sean  Service User interview –  talking briefly about what it was like in the early days of their treatment.

    What was it like staying at the Broadoak unit
    What would you like to see happen to improve the care environment provided

To drive forward the development and improvement of the Mental Health Services delivered by Mersey Care the TIME Project was created.

This innovative project is working together with stakeholders, service users and local communities to develop a brand new Centre, bringing significant improvements for everyone needing in-patient care and treatment or mental health services in the community ...  in a modern and therapeutic environment.

A once in a lifetime opportunity … and it will see the construction of high quality facilities that will transform the way mental health care is delivered.

But it’s about more than just the bricks and mortar

It’s about improving the care people receive  and increasing their  speed of recovery

...  creating an environment which encourages service users to play an active part in their own recovery.

It’s about maintaining basic human rights to privacy, safety and a family life.

 … building environments that will support personalisation, improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the services provided.

It’s about improving engagement with the community and reducing stigma

… supporting learning, creativity and innovation.

…improving the working environment for staff

It’s about improving the delivery of Mental Health Care for the people of Liverpool, Sefton and Kirkby.

The Time Project began back in 2003 … bringing together service users, carers and staff from Mersey Care NHS Trust,  together with members of the local community, Primary Care Trusts and local voluntary organisations to explore how mental health care provision could be improved.

Hundreds of people were consulted and involved during the design and development of the concepts.

Pat Umbers - Positive Comment from person living in the area involved in consultations
    What difference will the new hospitals make to the region
    How do you feel about living close to the new Hospital

The Project has involved a huge amount of people;   designers were appointed;   community meetings held;   ideas presented   …   with a formal consultation held in 2005.   

The project has experienced several setbacks during the earlier days … and stalled briefly when it was without a Project Director for twelve months until the current team were appointed in 2007.

The model of care had to be agreed and plans drawn up for the buildings, and at every stage the Project has had to prove its’ value for money to gain approvals from the Primary Care Trusts and the Department of Health.

But a major landmark was reached when the Treasury finally announced its approval of the funding in the Autumn of 2011 and the work could finally start on the construction of the new centres.

 Brief comment from Alan Yates discussing the landmark announcement and commitment to the Project.

The findings  from the consultations were reported back to the TIME project team, now  led by John Doyle and Sam McCumiskey,  and the concepts  started  to crystallise  …   following the five principles of wellbeing …

    Connecting with the community and service users

    Encouraging  Active engagement between service users, carers and staff

    Taking  notice of the needs of everyone involved

    Learning  from past experiences and improving mental health care provision

    Giving the community a facility they could be proud of.

The new facilities will be built on the old Walton General Hospital site in Rice Lane, which many local people still recognise as a former mental health hospital, and the derelict Ian Skelly Car Showroom at Edge Lane, next to Rathbone Hospital.

Each building will house 85 beds across five in-patient wards – providing modern mental healthcare provision for local adults, including older people and those with dementia and learning difficulties.

They will offer privacy and dignity for patients, with single, en-suite bedrooms and safe access to beautiful garden and activity spaces.

The two Centres will provide learning, meeting, therapy and consulting spaces for community teams, as well as a café,   two family rooms and a tribunal suite.    

The spiritual needs of communities using the services will be catered for with the provision of a multi-faith room at both sites.

Since the early days the TIME Project has always been clear in its objectives  …

‘To deliver high quality, acute mental health and acute learning disability services in modern, fit for purpose, accessible centres across Liverpool, Sefton and Kirby as part of the Trust’s  wider Health and Learning Disability strategy’

Interview with stakeholder to underpin commitment to project – Noirin Smith Modern Matron, Stoddart House

Demolition of the site at Walton began in September 2011 with the expected clearing of the site in Edge lane to be completed early in 2012.

Construction of the new buildings will begin early in 2012, bringing new life to the two local areas … and it’s hoped the doors will open for business by 2014.

The investment in improving mental health care delivers a clear message that Mersey  Care are fully committed to reducing the stigma associated with mental health issues and making sure the services are delivered right where they are needed – closer to the local community.

The TIME Project has listened to what the local communities wanted – and now they really are starting to deliver