Land yet to be bought for Friarage mental health community care hub

The Friarage Hospital.

A health watchdog has expressed dismay over the delay between inpatient mental health services being axed at a hospital and a hub for community care being built.

Chair of North Yorkshire’s health scrutiny committee Councillor Jim Clark spoke of his disappointment after NHS bosses revealed land had yet to be bought at Northallerton’s Friarage Hospital for the hub.

Despite Cllr Clark pressing for an estimate of when the hub would be completed, as plans for the hub to back up a community mental health care drive are also yet submitted, NHS bosses said it was too early to say.

Detailed plans have been approved for the transfer of mental health in-patient services from the Friarage by the end of February and there will be no new admissions from January 1.

NHS bosses say most people will receive the care and support they need in their home, while those needing hospital treatment would be admitted to Roseberry Park in Middlesbrough and West Park Hospital in Darlington, or specialist mental health in-patient care for people with dementia would continue to be provided at Auckland Park Hospital, in Bishop Auckland.