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Priory opens ‘fast access’ treatment centre in Bristol for local people struggling with mental health issues

  • The Wellbeing Centre opens its doors to patients in February 2020
  • Priory invests £350,000 in the new service
  • Recent data from Public Health England finds the number of hospital admissions for ‘intentional self-harm’ was much higher in Bristol than the average for the rest of England
  • Trips to A&E for mental health issues saw a 138% rise on the previous year
  • Working days lost in the South West due to work-related stress, anxiety and depression equates to an estimated 1,223,000 lost days in the three years (2016-19)
  • In a survey of 76 European cities, Bristol had the highest proportion of cocaine users – above London, Amsterdam and Barcelona1

The Priory Group, which runs the largest independent network of mental healthcare hospitals and clinics in the country, has opened a ‘walk-in’ Wellbeing Centre in Bristol.

To meet increasing demand for mental health services in the South West, the Wellbeing Centre, located close to Priory’s Bristol Hospital, provides expert treatment in an outpatient setting.

The centre, in Aztec West Business Park, is fully regulated by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). It is staffed by consultant psychiatrists, psychologists and a range of individual, group and family therapists, providing therapy and treatments for a broad range of mental health conditions including depression, anxiety, stress, eating disorders, addiction, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) as well as bereavement and grief.

The centre accepts self-funding patients and those with health insurance. Too often people do not realise their health insurance will cover a mental health assessment and treatment.

It is hoped the new service will help to ease the pressures on local A&E teams, after it was reported that visits to emergency departments for mental health issues in the Bristol area (looking at admissions data from the University Hospitals Bristol NHS Trust) had increased by 138% on the previous year, rising from 1095 to 2610.2

Research has also found that the South West of England loses an estimated 1,223,000 working days in 2016-19 due to conditions such as work-related depression, anxiety and stress.3

In the Bristol area, adult hospital admissions for alcohol-related harm increased by almost 4% from 3,043 (2016-17) to 3156 (2017-18)4. And, worryingly, hospital admissions for emergency self-harm were reported to be 54% higher than the overall average for England5.

Mandy Ryan, manager of the Bristol Wellbeing Centre, said; “At the start of this new decade, our team is so proud to be opening this much needed clinic to allow swift assessment and treatment of people in Bristol and across the South West, where there has been a gap for patients for some time. 

“Our ethos has always been to promote the importance of early assessment and diagnosis. We hope that by offering a friendly and discreet service that is accessible and convenient, we can play an active part in supporting all our patients towards a better quality of life and long-term recovery.”

The new centre allows outpatients access to one-to-one therapy and evidence-based treatment methods. She added: “I’m delighted to be heading up Priory Wellbeing Centre Bristol. Our specialist team provide a wide variety of therapies, individually targeted to patients’ needs, and we are looking forward to supporting those in need, with expert mental healthcare.”

Dr Leanne Hayward, Consultant Psychiatrist at Priory’s Bristol Hospital and the Wellbeing Centre, treats patients with mental health conditions including depression, anxiety and eating disorders. She says, “The Wellbeing Centre will meet much needed demand in the Bristol area. Those with mental health conditions need to receive the right treatment as soon as possible, and at the wellbeing centre we offer the swift and specialist support patients require. I look forward to working with patients at this excellent new service.”

This opening of the Bristol Wellbeing Centre is the latest in a series of Wellbeing Centres launched by the Priory Group, in Birmingham, Southampton, Canterbury, Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Greater Manchester, Oxford and London (Fenchurch Street and Harley Street).

Notes to editors

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About Priory Group

The Priory Group is the leading provider of behavioural and mental healthcare in the UK. It treats around 20,000 patients a year at its facilities, for a range of conditions including depression, stress, drug, alcohol and gambling addictions, eating disorders, self-harming and PTSD. The Group is organised into four divisions – healthcare, education and children’s services, adult care and older people’s care – and its purpose is to make a real and lasting difference for everyone it supports. Priory Education operates 26 schools attended by more than 1,000 pupils with autism, Asperger’s and complex behaviours.



2 NHS Digital; A&E attendances for mental health concerns (May 2019)

3 The Labour Force Survey;

4 Public Health England;

5 Public Health England;

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