THE Member of Parliament for Tamworth, the Rt. Hon. Christopher Pincher MP has joined the campaign to save the George Bryan Centre in Mile Oak from closure.
Christopher Pincher told Tamworth Informed: “When the George Bryan Centre was struck by that terrible suspected arson attack, the Government and Department for Health and Social Care were quick to offer their help and support. Thankfully there were no lives lost and the NHS Trust did not require Government help.
“The NHS Trust has decided to close the centre temporarily, with the 12 remaining patients transferred to Stafford. I have written to both the Trust and to the Secretary of State for Health, Matt Hancock MP to ensure that this closure is not just temporary but is also swift. I will, of course, update readers when I receive a reply.
“The George Bryan Centre is a focal point of mental health provision in Tamworth and South Staffordshire and to lose the service to Stafford would bad for the people of Tamworth.”
Earlier this year, the West Wing of the site suffered a severe fire which resulted in the loss of use of that part of the building – the East Wing, however, was unaffected.
On Friday afternoon (March 15) we learned that the East Wing is to now close to all new admissions and the current 12 patients are to be ‘safely discharged’.
The trust which operates the site, the Midlands Partnership Foundation Trust has said that the closure is temporary – but that a ‘robust engagement exercise’ about the future of the service is to take place.
The move means that Tamworth Residents requiring in-patient Mental Health support will need to attend St Georges in Stafford – or further afield
It also means that people from Tamworth visiting friends or relatives will face at least a 60-mile round trip.
The main points of our campaign and petition are to ask MPFT to:
- Ensure that any closure for repairs to the site is temporary.
- Ensure that the unit is fully repaired to enable the same number of patients (as before the fire) to receive inpatient care.
- To rethink the earlier decision to close the s.136 Mental Health Act suite. This closure means that persons requiring immediate assessment are having to travel further – whilst at their most vulnerable point.