New beds open at Priory’s Hospital in Bristol as part of a £1m investment in local mental health

A 1 million pound investment in The Priory Hospital in Bristol will enable more patients with mental health needs to be treated.

The announcement comes ahead of World Health Day - on Friday April 7 - which this year focuses on the theme ‘depression’. The Day will be a highlight of the 'Depression: let’s talk' campaign which aims to ensure that more people with depression both seek and get help.

The Priory hospital in Heath House Lane has increased its beds for in-patients to help cope with demand for its services.

The investment - which represents significant spend on refurbishing, expanding and improving the existing building, based in Stapleton - involved extending both floors of the hospital which will now be able to treat more adult patients with acute needs.

The Priory Hospital Bristol is an independent psychiatric hospital which, as a result of the investment, will provide care and treatment for up to 73 adults with mental health conditions.

The hospital, which is rated 'good' by the industry regulator, the Care Quality Commission, has long-stay rehabilitation and acute mental health inpatient units. It also provides a range of outpatient-based therapy services, and a specialist eating disorder service.

It treats patients for a range of mental health conditions such as stress, depression and anxiety, and has an Addiction Treatment Programme.

As part of its expansion, Priory Hospital in Bristol also recruited more healthcare staff.

Depression affects people of all ages, from all walks of life, in all countries. It causes mental anguish and impacts on people's ability to carry out even the simplest everyday tasks, with sometimes devastating consequences for relationships with family and friends and the ability to earn a living.

At worst, depression can lead to suicide, now the second leading cause of death among 15-29-year olds, according to the World Health Organisation.

Yet, depression can be prevented and treated. A better understanding of what depression is, and how it can be prevented and treated, will help reduce the stigma associated with the condition, and lead to more people seeking help.

The hospital's director, Adam Lampitt, said; "I am delighted these enhanced facilities - based in our peaceful and private location - will enable us to increase our services to all patients.

"Positive patient outcomes are at the very heart of the services we offer at our specialist hospital, and all my colleagues here absolutely recognise that every patient is different and therefore must be assessed and treated as an individual in the best possible surroundings.

"We are also very aware of the need for greater resources and 'more beds', both in the South West and across the UK, and as such we are delighted to be able to broaden our services so we can see more patients and help them in their journey towards a strong recovery."

He added: "There should be no stigma related to mental health. Whatever challenges people may be facing, or whatever the cause of their mental ill health, we want people to make a recovery in their own time, under the care of experts."

Priory experts say around 10% of men and 25% of women in the UK will develop depression at some stage in their life.

The average age of onset is late 30s, and psychological help can be highly effective.

Antidepressants should not be routinely used to treat persistent mild depression because the risk/benefit ratio is poor, but are considered for people with:

  • A past history of moderate or severe depression
  • An initial presentation of mild depressive symptoms that have been present for a long period (typically at least 2 years)
  • Mild depression that persists after psychological interventions

A GP can also offer advice and guidance on how someone can help improve their own wellbeing.

The following activities and resources can be used alongside suggested treatment, to support patients in leading a more positive way of life:

  • Self-help, e.g. http://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/
  • Encourage patients to establish regular sleep and wake times
  • Create a proper environment for sleep
  • Avoid excess eating, smoking or drinking alcohol, especially before sleep
  • Take regular physical exercise - the effective duration is 45 to 60 minutes three times per week for 10 to 12 weeks

The Priory offers tailored treatment programmes for individuals suffering with depression which are based on their medical history and personal experiences. There are a number of specialist Consultant Psychiatrists who oversee the treatment, which may include a combination of both medication and psychological therapies. There is the option for receiving treatment on an inpatient basis if the severity, risk or personal choice is to do so.

For more details on the full range of Priory Services, please call 0800 840 3219 or click here to make an enquiry.