Spencer Ward set to re-open

Cavendish Hospital, Buxton
Cavendish Hospital, Buxton

Buxton’s Spencer Ward, which has been closed since February because of severe staffing problems, is to re-open to new admissions next week.

Derbyshire Community Health Services, which runs Cavendish Hospital, where the ward is based, has redeployed staff to Spencer Ward so that it can re-open on Monday.

But existing patients on the ward, who were relocated to the Riverside Ward at Newholme Hospital in Bakewell, are expected to remain there while new staff are recruited. The ward caters for older people with mental health problems.

Patrick Murphy, general manager of older people’s mental health services for Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (DCHS), said: “It has taken a lot of planning to get to this stage.

“New recruitment has so far proved challenging, so while we explore longer term solutions we have taken these steps with redeployment of our staff to enable the ward to reopen.

“It has involved balancing the needs of our services more widely so we are not putting other areas under pressure.”

Six qualified nurses are being redeployed to Spencer Ward for the foreseeable future, which the trust say will double the number of qualified nursing staff on the ward.

The trust added that they didn’t anticipate moving patients who are already being cared for elsewhere while they seek a solution to the longer term recruitment problems.

DCHS have said they are committed to providing health services in Buxton.