COMMERCE: A Yorkshire mental health hospital, which has provided services since the eighteenth century is to close, following concerns raised by the Care Quality Commission about the safety of the premises.

A CQC inspection of Bootham Park Hospital “found patients who used the service, staff and visitors were not protected against the risks of unsafe or unsuitable premises”.

The decision to close the hospital was taken jointly by Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group by Leeds and York Partnership Trust, which runs services at the hospital.  

The CCG said the inspection report highlighted the “number of issues that can only be resolved by moving to alternative accommodation”.

The hospital is located in a Grade 1 listed building, restricting the level of improvements that can be made to it.

The trust and CCG are working with, NHS England, City of York Council and NHS Property Services, which owns the premises, to find an interim facility pending the approval and construction of a new hospital.

The trust has proposed to temporarily relocate some services to the nearby Peppermill Court, which is currently used as a community unit for older people. The trust has estimated that the move to could take 15-18 months because of the level of refurbishment required.

The CCG also plans to run a consultation process over the summer about the nature of the proposed hospital. It will also look into what services could be provided in a community setting.

Rachel Potts, the CCG’s chief operating officer said the hospital “has served the people of the Vale of York well for 240 years, but the time has come for it to be replaced.

“The CCG believes that the review of mental health services gives us a fantastic opportunity to define the best possible model of care within which we can design a state of the art hospital facility.”

She added the CCG is “confident that the consultation process will allow it to commission innovative solutions that are fit for the 21st century.”

A Trust spokesman said: “Bootham Park Hospital was built in 1777 and has provided mental health services in York since that time. The NHS has continued to invest in the building, but it is no longer suitable for modern mental health services the people of York expect.”

“We are working with our commissioners (Vale of York CCG) and the landlords of Bootham Park (NHS Property Services) to agree short- and longer-term solutions for services currently based there.”