£400k investment in Tyrone and Fermanagh Hospital welcomed14/06/2021
The Western Trust has welcomed the commitment of £400K from the Department of Health towards the continued modernisation of Mental Health Services in Omagh.
The additional funding package was announced by Health Minister Robin Swann during a visit to Western Trust mental health and addictions units at the Tyrone and Fermanagh Hospital in Omagh, where he took time to meet staff and to see the recent capital improvements to the Hospital.
Minister Swann said:
“As with my visits to other similar units across Northern Ireland, in recent times, I am continually struck by the amazing dedication and professionalism of the staff working in both addictions and mental health services. Particularly during the especially challenging times presented by the ongoing pandemic their resilience has been outstanding.”
Tyrone and Fermanagh Hospital provides inpatient acute mental health care, psychiatric intensive care and addictions inpatient care. The Hospital also provides a six-bedded crisis house, which has been transformed to provide hospital in-patient services to meet the increasing need associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The facilities, some of which date back to the 1930’s are in need of investment, with the long term plan for a new 6,700m2 new-build facility to be located adjacent to the Omagh Hospital and Primary Care Complex. The new centre will replace existing outdated facilities and provide modern, fit-for-purpose accommodation in the Southern Sector of the Trust.
Minister Swann reiterated that:
“I consider a new mental health unit in Omagh to be a very important and deserving priority for my Department. That is why last September I resubmitted a bid for funding to commence the new unit as part of a four year capital budget information gathering exercise.
“Without additional resources and a multi-year budget settlement my Department is unable to commence any significant new investments that will continue beyond this financial year.
“I remain determined to keep pressing for the necessary funding for this important project but in the interim I can confirm my Department will provide a further £400k to invest in Tyrone and Fermanagh Hospital to improve patient safety and experience. The investment will have a direct impact on patients and will improve outcomes and bringing the total invested in AMH facilities in Omagh over the last two years to almost £1.5million.”
Commenting on the Minister’s visit, Western Trust Director of Adult Mental Health & Disability Services, Karen O’Brien, said:
“We are delighted to welcome the Minister to Omagh today to visit our Complex Detoxification Unit in the Asha Centre and our Elm, Lime and Integrated Psychiatric Intensive Care Units (PICU).
“On behalf of the Western Trust I would like to thank him for taking time out of his busy schedule to come and view, first hand, our extensive acute mental health facilities in Omagh and to acknowledge the work and commitment of our staff towards the provision of mental health and social care services across the Western Trust.
“For example, the Asha Centre plays a pivotal role in the provision of Mental Health Services by the Western Trust area by providing an 8 bedded regional detoxification unit which accepts referrals from Community Addiction Teams across Northern Ireland. Through the unit we offer the opportunity for medical detoxification and/or stabilisation for clients with complex drug and alcohol issues.
“Through our Elm, Lime and Integrated PICU we provide 26 acute inpatient beds, 5 of which are used flexibly as integrated PICU beds and provide single gender dormitory style accommodation for service users.
These wards were built in 1930 and 1955 respectively and are regularly maintained including recent improvement works following investment from the Department of Health. Despite this we are aware of the need for a larger scheme of work to provide modern, therapeutic spaces for our in-patients.
“This is a situation that the Minister is fully aware of and the award of this additional £400k will help us to continue to address these issues and represents fantastic news in our ongoing drive to update and modernise these services across the Western Trust.”
“On behalf of the Western Trust I would like to thank the Minister for his continued support and for his clear and continuing commitment towards those in need of mental health care, which is demonstrated through his support of proposals for a new mental health unit in Omagh.”