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Media Release

Date: 7 October 2016

RUH invites feedback on planned relocation of RNHRD's Rheumatology and Therapies Services

The Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundations is inviting feedback on its plan to move rheumatology and therapies services from the Mineral Water Hospital, known locally as the ‘Min’  to a purpose built RNRHD and Therapies Centre on the RUH’s Combe Park site.

Although these services will not move until 2018, the Trust is keen to gather feedback now, as plans for the new Centre start to take shape.

Dr Raj Sengupta, Consultant Rheumatologist and lead for the Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) service explains “Patients who use these services will continue to be seen and treated by the same teams, only the location will change.  We’re all fond of the Mineral Hospital building, but we’ve known for some time that to ensure the future of the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases’ (RNHRD) and its highly regarded services, we need to move out of the Min.  We’re really excited about what the future holds; patients and clinicians have been closely involved in the design of the new Centre, which forms part of the RUH’s estates redevelopment programme.”

The purpose built Centre will include a hydrotherapy pool, a state of the art gym, group rooms and improved waiting facilities. Many of those using the RNRHD’s rheumatology and therapies services have long term conditions, so supporting patients to help manage their own condition will continue to be a focus in the new Centre.

Julie Russell, Rheumatology Physiotherapy Clinical Specialist & Service Lead says, “As well as the RNHRD’s Rheumatology and Therapies services, the Centre will be the new home of the RUH’s therapies services. We’re bringing the teams together under one roof, to deliver a holistic and patient centred approach to care. It’s about strengthening the RNHRD’s specialist services; it’s about making the patient experience the best it can be. At the moment, patients may need to go back and forth between the RUH and RNHRD for their care, the RNHRD and Therapies Centre means we’ll have fantastic new facilities all on one site.”

The RNHRD’s Clinical Measurement service provides bone mineral densitometry (DEXA scanning) and specialist imaging and measurement services, it’s closely linked with the rheumatology and therapies services provided at the Min site, so will relocate at the same time to the RUH’s Nuclear Medicine Department before a final move to the RUH’s Dyson Cancer Centre, due to open in 2020, and will be in close proximity to the RNHRD services.

Inpatient beds and residential accommodation will also still be made available at Combe Park for those who require these services.

We’re seeking views from patients, carers, healthcare partners and anyone who has an interest in the RNHRD’s rheumatology and therapies services to help our planning, to ensure that we continue to provide the best services for current and future patients.  

As part of this process, we’re holding an informal event on 20th October, 9.30 – 4.30pm at the Bath Racecourse. In the morning session, there will be the opportunity to meet with clinicians, to hear more about the new RNHRD and Therapies Centre and to learn what this will mean for patients and carers. Attendees will be able to provide feedback on the plans to relocate and have any further questions answered.

In the afternoon session, there will be an opportunity to view the latest designs of the RNHRD and Therapies Centre. The RUH’s Commercial Projects Team would like to hear about your experience and any practical ideas you may have to contribute on how the environment of the new building could further improve services for patients, their families and carers.

If you would like to attend, please contact: jessica.white2@nhs.net or call 01225 824738. Please let us know if you would like to come along to the morning session or to the whole day, by 14th October.

More information, and a feedback survey is available online: www.ruh.nhs.uk/about/service_relocations 

Comments are welcomed via email ruh-tr.haveyoursay@nhs.net, in writing or in person if you register to attend the Trust’s engagement event.

Moving these services is part of a careful and phased approach to relocating all RNHRD services over a three year period from the Mineral Hospital site to the RUH or appropriate community based settings, to maximise patient benefit. Feedback on these plans is welcome at any time and more information is available on our website www.ruh.nhs.uk

ENDS

Notes to the editor:

Rheumatology Service

Clinical services provided by the Rheumatology Service at the Min site include:

  • Ankylosing Spondylitis service
  • Biologics Service (assessment and treatment for people with musculoskeletal conditions including: rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, connective tissue diseases, osteoporosis who require infusions or injections or urgent assessments.)
  • Connective Tissue Disease Service
  • Fibromyalgia Service
  • General Rheumatology
  • Hypermobility
  • Metabolic bone diseases
  • Performing arts medicine clinic
  • Psoriatic Arthritis
  • Sports and Exercise medicine service

Rheumatology Therapies Services

The Rheumatology Therapies service at the Min site provides a wide range of assessment, treatment and interventions for those with musculoskeletal and rheumatology conditions. These include:

  • Physiotherapy service including hydrotherapy
  • Occupational therapy services
  • Podiatry service
  • Orthotics service
  • Dermatology
  • Educational activities for the management of long term conditions through multidisciplinary programmes for adults diagnosed with fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, lupus and scleroderma
  • Specialist AS multidisciplinary residential course

Clinical Measurement Service

The RNHRD’s Clinical Measurement service provides imaging and measurement services which enable doctors and clinicians to give accurate diagnosis and optimum treatment to patients and includes:

  • Bone mineral densitometry (DEXA scanning)
  • Specialist imaging and measurement

Engagement Event

The Trust is holding an informal event, where you will be able to share your views, meet clinicians and ask any additional questions around the planned relocation of rheumatology and therapies services from the Min. This will be held at Bath Racecourse, Lansdown, Bath, BA1 9BU on  the morning of 20th October.

If you would like to attend, please contact jessica.white2@nhs.net or call 01225 824738.

Please let us know if you would like to come along to the morning session or to the whole day, and if there are any particular services you are interested in hearing about or any questions you would like addressed. Refreshments and lunch will be provided.

Please confirm your place by 14th October. Please note, places on the afternoon session are limited and will be allocated on a first come first served basis.
Free parking is available on site, and refreshments and lunch will be provided.

RNHRD and Therapies Centre
More information on the planned RNHRD and Therapies Centre is available on the Trust website.

Ends

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