A major expansion is underway at an Irvine hospital which supports people with mental health issues.

As a requirement of Covid contingencies, mental health inpatient rehabilitation services  at Woodland View were reconfigured.

This has led to the development of an enhanced outreach model from Warrix Avenue that has released the Ward 7B physical ward environment for other purposes and the staffing budget for this area is to be re-allocated to support this new model.

Now a proposal has been developed to reopen Ward 7B as a nurse-led 72- hour assessment unit with an expected impact of reducing adult mental health (AMH) acute beds. 

This plan was approved at a meeting of the integration joint board.

This freed bed capacity could be consolidated in one AMH acute bedroom wing to potentially become a self-contained unit for a child and adolescent mental health service (CAMHS) assessment/support hub. 

The nurse led 72-hour assessment unit:

reduces the need for adult AMH acute beds

reduces length of stay through very focused assessment on admission with clear decision point within 72 hours of admission

improves patient care experience, simpler pathway and removing risk of multiple assessments and waits within busy emergency department

releases time from ambulance and police services accompanying people requiring psychiatric assessment to emergency departments (EDs)

reduces the need for sole practitioner assessments, pressure for these assessing staff and benefit of joint assessments

provides wider support from Woodland View in case of distressed or agitated people

Maximises use of condition appropriate environment at Woodland View – better for service user and families

24/7 hub for unscheduled care including crisis and mental health advanced nurse practitioners (MHANP) services with links to NHS 24 overnight, Ayrshire Unscheduled Care Service (AUCS) and out of hours social work.

Brings together numerous unscheduled functions (one stop shop) to ensure seamless care/rapid transition.

Video assessment room for ‘Attend Anywhere’ assessment to support remote urgent psychiatric assessment

Ward 7A can also retain the additional space ‘borrowed’ from Ward 7B.

Existing staff  will run the enhancement to Warrix Avenue to continue to develop and provide their outreach model and the remaining finance will be used to address pressures across inpatient services.

The IJB agreed to endorse the option appraisal recommendations and approve proposal for use of Ward 7B as a 72-hour unscheduled care unit, delivery of an alternative outreach rehabilitation model from Warrix Avenue and future planning for delivery of a CAMHS assessment hub.