The Intensive Psychiatric Care Unit (IPCU) in Argyll and Bute Hospital in Lochgilphead has been temporarily closed to new admissions after a recent review highlighted a number of concerns.
The hospital’s Succoth ward, however, will not be affected and will remain open to new admissions.
Dr Michael Hall, Medical Director for Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership, said: “We recently carried out a review of inpatient mental health services within Argyll and Bute Hospital and a number of challenges were identified, including the provision of a safe care environment and the availability of trained nursing staff.
“The Intensive Psychiatric Care Unit within the hospital has therefore been temporarily closed to new admissions but it can still be used on an interim basis as a place of safety for up to 72 hours to allow patients to be clinically assessed. If patients require a more prolonged period of intensive care treatment they will be transferred to an appropriate facility outwith Argyll and Bute. In reaching this decision patient safety and wellbeing have been our priority.
“It is also our intention to continue with plans to relocate inpatient mental health services from Argyll and Bute Hospital to the lower ground floor of Mid Argyll Community Hospital and Integrated Care Centre.
“This requires some alteration works to ensure the area meets the necessary requirements and it is anticipated that this work will be completed by December 2016.
“This planned relocation is an interim measure pending further engagement prior to a final decision about where the service will be provided in the longer term.”