01 March 2022
States Members voted in January to reinstate rehabilitation services at Samarès Ward on the Overdale site or at another suitable location. In-patient rehabilitation services were moved out of Overdale in 2020 as part of the emergency response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Since 19 January, the Minister for Health and Social Services, Deputy Richard Renouf, and government officers have looked at the possibility of re-instating the facilities that were available at Samarès Ward at a combination of 16 different government owned sites. These included a green field site, the former Les Quennevais School, Le Bas Centre and sites at St Saviour's Hospital.
Key constraints that reduced the options considerably, were the large space requirements (bedrooms, gym, equipment, kitchen, occupational therapy, staff rooms), the impact on the current occupants of identified sites, timing issues with planning permissions and the time required to refurbish or re-build on a completely new site, clinical safety including the required proximity and access to the hospital and overall costs.
Deputy Renouf presented the options to the Council of Ministers who have supported his decision to move back to Samarès Ward as soon as possible and to refurbish Plémont Ward into a dedicated, therapeutic rehabilitation unit by the end of 2022. The Minister for Treasury and Resources, Deputy Susie Pinel, has agreed to underwrite the cost of the implementation as presented by Deputy Renouf for up to £2 million.
The funding will improve the current rehabilitation offering in Jersey until the new hospital, which will provide extensive rehabilitation facilities within a dedicated acute unit, is built.
Under the plans, the current Plémont Rehabilitation Unit based at the General Hospital will be relocated to Samarès Ward at Overdale during July. This is the soonest that the service can be transferred as services that are currently at the Overdale site will need to be safely relocated to the General Hospital or temporary accommodation to ensure no break in their service continuity.
There will be no disruption to other services which are currently at Overdale. The services affected are: the Assisted Reproduction Unit; Retinal Screening; Pre-operational assessment; Community Therapies and the Our Hospital project team. Affected service users and staff will receive detailed information over the next few weeks.
The renovation works at the current Plémont Rehabilitation Unit will retain the existing single rooms and convert the existing six-bedded bays into four-bedded bays to ensure patients have more personal and quiet space compared to the current environment.
The Unit will also be refurbished and updated with the aim to create therapeutic environment. A dining room, activities area, and day room will be created to provide space for social activities. The renovated unit will provide additional services to those that were at Samarès Ward, such as the availability of therapies seven days a week, and patients being able to access the Mental Health Team.
By locating the rehabilitation unit in the General Hospital, patients will be able to receive medical cover 24-hours a day, seven days a week. They will also benefit from access to hospital-based services such as the hydro-pool and diagnostic services.
The renovation works will be completed by the end of December to ensure that the Our Hospital project is not delayed.
There will be further investment in community therapies to increase the service provision to be offered in patients' homes or in the community. This will mean increased recruitment into community therapies to ensure patients get timely access to therapies to achieve their personal rehabilitation goals.
Deputy Richard Renouf said: "We have always been committed to providing the very best care to our patients, but I accept that the current Plémont Rehabilitation Unit is in need of renovation to create a better environment for patients until we can move to the new hospital which will provide extensive rehabilitation facilities. We will return to Samarès Ward whilst it is available for use and will use that time to carry out the improvement work in Plémont Ward.
"We have listened to Islanders, States members and HCS colleagues and understand what an important part the rehabilitation unit plays in a patient's recovery. We have considered a wide range of options, have carried out a gap analysis and have already implemented a variety of service improvements that are benefitting patients. I am pleased to see the good feedback from patients that we have received over the last few weeks. I'm glad that we now have this detailed plan in place to ensure that we can enhance the physical environment on the rehabilitation unit while continuing to provide the best quality care."