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New mental health unit for children in London opens this month

07 Nov 2018

Lavender Walk, a new inpatient unit for children with mental health difficulties, opens on Monday 12 November.

The unit, next to Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in Kensington, will provide 12 inpatient beds for people aged between 13 and 18 from across North West London who are experiencing severe mental health difficulties and need to be cared for in a safe and secure environment. 

The unit has classrooms to help young people to continue with their schooling, a multisensory room, ICT room and other facilities to help young people feel comfortable during their stay.
Staff and young people, who helped design and develop the unit, had a sneak preview last week.

The unit is a joint project between West London NHS Trust and Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust (CNWL). It comes from the innovative work by the North West London CAMHS (Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service) New Models of Care programme.

The unit will open next week, initially focusing on bringing young people already in specialist care closer to home to continue their treatment and to facilitate continuity of care with community CAMHS services.

West London NHS Trust’s Clinical Director for CAMHS, Vijay Parkash said: “The new unit is really impressive to see. I hope that young people who come here will find it welcoming and a comfortable place to stay and continue their education. We are now really looking forward to the new facility opening in a few weeks and the first service users coming through the door.”

Maria O’Brien, Director of Community Services at CNWL, said: “It’s a wow factor day. This will be a fantastic unit. We know the best place for young people is at home but there is always going to be a need for more specialised support and sometimes that includes a short hospital stay. We’re so pleased that young people in London now have a fantastic unit to help them, when they need it, stay close to home; it takes some of their stress away.”