Manchester set for £105.9 million mental health unit

Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (GMMH) has received final approval to build a new £105.9 million mental health unit for adults.

The construction, which was given the green light by the UK Government as part of its plans to commitment to upgrading 20 hospitals, will take place at North Manchester General Hospital (NMGH).

The new addition will replace the current Park House mental health inpatient unit at NMGH, with £91.3 million set to be funded by central government, and the remaining £14.6 million funded by the trust.

Park House, which provides assessment and treatment for adults and older people with mental health needs such as depression, schizophrenia, psychosis and dementia, was taken over by NMGH in 2017 and identified for improvements.

The new ‘state-of-the-art’ unit is expected to improve patient experience through 150 single bedrooms with private en-suite bathrooms, indoor activity areas, and outdoor garden space, as well as a purpose built Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU).

GMMH says it has engaged with service users, staff, carers, the local community, and key stakeholders, throughout the process, and that this will continue through feedback and test thinking during development.

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said: “This announcement is great news. It ensures patients are cared for in the best possible environment and it will no doubt be welcomed by staff and patients.

“Ensuring that everyone gets the mental health support they need is a priority for me and this funding will give us first class mental health facilities that patients in our city-region deserve.”

Neil Thwaite, Chief Executive at GMMH, commented: “We are absolutely delighted to have received government approval today to go ahead with our ambitious and exciting plans to build a new mental health inpatient unit for Manchester.

“The new unit will transform the mental health inpatient experience for our service users, their families and our staff in Manchester. It will allow us to provide the best possible specialist mental health care in a cutting-edge building that offers a pleasant and therapeutic environment for all.”

Work has already begun to clear the development site, with construction work due to start in April 2022 and the new unit expected to be operational by 2024.