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Beccles Hospital reopens

New safe and secure ‘dementia garden’ at Beccles Hospital

by Chris Cunniff

Inpatients will move back to Beccles Hospital this week following a major £1.65m refurbishment project.

NHS Great Yarmouth and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will reopen the 20-bedded revamped Minsmere Ward to patients on 21 February 2017.

The construction was carried out by P J Spillings in partnership with the owners of the hospital, NHS Property Services.

Sean Perry, principal construction manager at NHS Property Services, said: “This major renovation of Beccles Hospital will significantly improve the experience of patients and we have been pleased to support the enhancement of the site and look forward to it reopening.

“We recognise that the hospital is a vital asset to the local community and we have provided £500k of investment to ensure the building meets all necessary safety and legislative requirements and supports the provision of safe and quality services for many years to come.”

The revamped Minsmere Ward has been carefully designed to be welcoming, logical and comforting, and uses colours, text and images which meet dementia-friendly standards. It includes a circular corridor to encourage walking and movement, while each area has been designed to be unique and offer markers to help patients to navigate.

The external spaces have also been designed with vulnerable patients in mind, and include a safe and secure ‘dementia garden’ with seating and raised planters, so that patients can enjoy contact with nature.

The revamped Minsmere Ward has reopened at Beccles War Memorial Hospital

Cath Byford, chief nurse with the CCG, said: “We are really pleased that the hospital is reopening so that our patients can benefit from the enhanced facilities it will provide.

“The ward refurbishment, new side rooms and en-suite facilities will ensure every patient can enjoy the highest levels of privacy and dignity, while additional therapy areas will help patients recover so that they can return home more quickly. We have also worked with LSI Architects to make sure that the new unit will be dementia-friendly and more reassuring for patients with a dementia diagnosis.”

Adele Madin, director of adult services at East Coast Community Healthcare (ECCH), which runs the hospital, said: “We are very excited about the new facilities and are sure it will enable our staff to continue to provide the highest possible quality of care. Our teams are looking forward to being back in Beccles Hospital and I’d like to thank them for their commitment to ensuring that, while the revamp took place, patients received an equally high level of service.”