Care beds set to move into town hospital

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Patients who need rehabilitation before returning home from hospital will be looked after at a new unit in Pontefract.

Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust is consulting staff over plans to open a 42-bed intermediate care unit at Pontefract Hospital.

Patients who were taken to Monument House, an existing intermediate unit in Pontefract which has already closed, will go to the new facility.

The new unit will also take patients who currently go to the Kingsdale unit, in Lofthouse, for rehabilitation.

A stroke rehabilitation unit at Pontefract Hospital would also relocate to Pinderfields Hospital under the plan.

Mike Forster, Mid Yorkshire’s director of community services operations, said “The opening of a new 42 bed Intermediate Care Facility at Pontefract Hospital will allow those patients who no longer require acute care to receive the rehabilitation and support they require to get them safely back home.

“This will also free up beds at Pinderfields Hospital to manage our sickest patients as rapidly as possible throughout the winter period.”

Mid Yorkshire said the stroke unit would move to Pinderfields, where it would be located next to the existing Acute Stroke Unit.

The trust said in a statement: “This will provide quicker access to medical support for stroke patients if they deteriorate and also improve the care for stroke patients by providing access to a wider range of rehabilitation facilities, including a gymnasium and hydrotherapy pool on site.”

Mid Yorkshire said there were no plans to close 26-bed Queen Elizabeth House, another existing intermediate care unit in Wakefield.

The intermediate units provide short-term care for people who need extra support before they are deemed well enough to go home.