Northern Ireland Health Minister Michelle O’Neill, MLA, has cut the first sod for a new purpose-built acute mental health inpatient unit at Belfast City Hospital yesterday.
This facility will provide inpatient services for acutely mentally ill adults within the Belfast area. It is expected to be completed in late 2018 and will cost £30million. This new facility will have 74 Acute Mental Health beds and 6 Psychiatric Intensive Care beds.
Minister O’Neill said: “This is the third new build acute mental health facility in the programme of reform of mental health services envisaged by the Bamford review.
“This modern facility will offer high standards of treatment and evidence-based interventions for people experiencing an acute phase of mental illness and will allow practical working with individuals and their families towards recovery in a specially designed therapeutic environment.”
The Minister added: “I have consistently said that mental health is one of my key priorities and I fully recognise the impact this has on individuals, families and the wider community.
“My priorities for our health and social care system are clearly set out in my Health and Wellbeing 2026: Delivering Together vision and I will continue to vigorously pursue and champion mental health issues to achieve real transformation.”
Also attending the sod-cutting Dr Michael McBride Chief Executive of the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust said: “I am delighted that Minister O’Neill is here today to perform the official sod-cutting ceremony of the new acute mental health inpatient unit. The unit will deliver a 21st century environment to support the treatment and care of severely mentally ill patients. The first purpose built unit for acutely mentally ill adults within the Belfast area has been designed to ensure that the environment supports and improves every future inpatient’s experience and recovery.”