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Redbridge’s Brookside adolescent mental health unit officially reopens

PUBLISHED: 15:00 30 March 2017

NELFT officially re-opening the Brookside secure unit.  Chairman Joe Fielder, Deputy Mayor of London Joanne McCartney, Redbridge Mayor Cllr Gurdial Bhamra and Director of ARD at NELFT Caroline O'Donnell

NELFT officially re-opening the Brookside secure unit. Chairman Joe Fielder, Deputy Mayor of London Joanne McCartney, Redbridge Mayor Cllr Gurdial Bhamra and Director of ARD at NELFT Caroline O'Donnell

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The mental health unit serving Redbridge’s young people officially reopened yesterday, just under a year since inspectors advised it to close.

The North East London Foundation Trust (Nelft), temporarily closed Brookside adolescent mental health unit in Barley Lane, Goodmayes, in May to make improvements following a Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection.

Nelft chairman Joe Fielder said that closing the unit last year was “the hardest decision we’ve ever had to make”, but stressed the work had been necessary to create “a building fit for future generations”.

It then spent more than £750,000 on renovating and restaffing the unit, which was then re-inspected by the CQC in October 2016.

Last month, Nelft was that Brookside had received a ‘Good’ rating across all areas during the new inspection, paving the way for the unit to reopen fully.

Speaking after the event, which was also attended by Redbridge Mayor Cllr Gurdial Bhamra and a number of other dignitaries, Mr Fielder said: “I was delighted to welcome the Deputy Mayor of London Joanne McCartney here today to officially re-open Brookside.

“Since the improvements were made last year, the unit has been transformed and both patients and staff are benefiting from the improved environment.”

He also pointed out that feedback from service users of the new unit, has been overwhelmingly positive.

“The staff here today have been able to demonstrate what a positive change this has been and we feel we have a unit that will be providing the best care for years to come,” he said.

As she gave the ceremony’s keynote speech, the Deputy Mayor of London pledged that City Hall would do all it could to champion mental health services in London.

Ms McCartney said: “Mental health is a top priority for us and I want to ensure that we use every opportunity to raise awareness of mental health and to take action through our policies.

“This summer, the Mayor and the London Health Board will launch Thrive London, a new city-wide approach to mental health.

“We want London to be the most mentally healthy big city in the world and we want you all to be part of it and please do get involved.

“On behalf of all Londoners, I would like to say a big thank you for all the amazing work you do here at Brookside and also for the work of your NHS colleagues across London.”

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