Plans for health centre to cut bed blocking at Ipswich Hospital, says firm
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A medical firm in Ipswich which delivers contracts for the NHS and social services is eyeing a new medical centre in Ransomes to reduce bed blocking.
Enable to Reable – a specialist rehabilitation centre for people leaving hospital – has submitted a planning application to convert empty offices in The Havens into a new medical facility.
The space, which was last occupied by the Royal Bank of Scotland around two years ago, will provide facilities for patients who are deemed medically fit to be discharged from hospital but unable to return home because they are unable to care for themselves independently.
Among the services will be physiotherapy, occupational therapists and social worker assessments, with the aim of helping patients become independent quicker and break the cycle of dependency.
The firm already delivers contracts under the NHS and Suffolk County Council’s social services.
A spokeswoman from the firm said: “One of the objectives of Enable to Reable is to reduce the pressure on beds within Ipswich Hospital by providing a credible service to the local authority where they can move patients out of the hospital environment into a unit specialising in getting patients back to their homes.
“The pressure on the NHS has been highlighted in the winter 2017 when there was intense pressure on hospital beds within the region.
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“Future planning will be most important and reducing the number of ‘bed blockers’ will have a positive impact on the hospital and local population.”
If approved, the 23-bed rehabilitation centre will be its first in Ipswich, and the firm said that it aims to open more across the East of England as demand for services grows.
Other units in Suffolk and Norfolk are expected in the next 12-24 months, with a vision of having 20 open within the next five years.
The plans said that it is “to an extent an experimental exercise”.
The average stay of patients is expected to be two or three weeks, depending on their level of need, with the aim of helping them recover without the need of long term community care
The plans are currently open for responses in the consultation, and are expected to go to planners for a decision from the end of September.