new entrance to the PICU

  View of the new entrance to the PICU

Demand for mental health services is greater than ever and is continuing to rise. The covid-19 pandemic has raised awareness of mental health, its importance, causes and treatment. National debate has prompted public empathy and increased support for assisting those in need.

We will create a brand new in-patient intensive care unit for children and young people in mental health crisis, so younger patients can access the specialist care they require locally, close to friends and family. There will be space for families to stay and the latest facilities to aid recovery. The facility is known as a psychiatric intensive care unit (PICU), and it will be access through the child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS). It will be at our Alumhurst Road site.

Dorset HealthCare, as an outstanding NHS Trust, is currently progressing a business case for a £73.9 million investment to create an acute mental health centre of excellence, funded by the government.

The new facilities we will create with this investment will improve emergency support and standards of care for those in mental health crisis. They will also mean we can provide specialist care to more people and end the need for out-of-area placements, which currently see children and young people separated from their loved ones. This is incredibly distressing for all involved and can hamper their chances of recovery.

The building works will include:

view of snug

view of 'snug' in the new PICU

  1. A high-spec, state-of-the art brand new facility at Alumhurst, alongside existing CAMHS provision
  2. A new build eight bed in-patient CAMHS PICU (including one fully accessible bedroom)
  3. An extra care suite, classrooms, tribunal room, communal courtyard, visitor accommodation for families, and tribunal room.

The facility replaces Seastone House (service to be relocated) and (vacant) Nightingale Court.