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Tameside could be getting a 'world class' mental health super centre

A local mental health trust has submitted funding bids totalling £220 million to the government to build two 'world class' mental health super centres - one of which could be in Tameside.

Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust provides mental health and learning disability services across five boroughs of Greater Manchester, including Tameside.

The Trust has requested £130 million to build a supercentre in Tameside or Stockport - the location is to be confirmed - which will be known as the South Manchester campus.

They have also submitted a £90 million bid to build a new centre on the site of Bury’s Fairfield Hospital. This would involve potentially purchasing around two acres of land from the Northern Care Alliance NHS Foundation Trust and making use of buildings they no longer require.

The Trust says the new centres would allow 'lots of different services to be brought together into modern, top-of-the range facilities'. 

The government has committed to build 40 new facilities as part of their £3.7 billion health infrastructure plan - also known as the new hospitals’ programme. They’ve already approved 32 schemes and are accepting bids for the final eight.

If successful, the new centres will support the Trust's ambition to 'invest in new facilities to benefit patients and staff'.

It will offer improved quality of care and recovery rates, care closer to people’s homes (supporting the national target of eliminating out of area placements) and reduced length of stay and readmission rates. 

Pennine Care also expects to save around £16 million (£3 million from the Tameside/Stockport development and £13 million from Bury) mainly by not having to maintain ageing facilities and reducing rent on buildings they don’t own.

It’s expected the outcome of this first phase will be shared later this year, with the chosen eight schemes announced in spring 2022. 

If successful, Pennine Care say it will involve staff, patients and others in further developing the plans to ensure the new centres meet their needs.

Meanwhile, a new £4.8 million psychiatric intensive care unit (PICU) at Tameside Hospital is 'on track' to open in April next year, which will replace Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust's current PICU in Stockport for men experiencing mental health distress. 

Once complete, the current PICU at Stepping Hill Hospital will be refurbished to create a new unit for women.

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