It was only six short months ago that three members of our chronic pain team accepted an invitation to view the site of the new RUH Therapies Centre, successor to the historic Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases (still referred to locally as “the Min” after its former name, the Royal Mineral Water Hospital).
Over the years, many of our clients suffering chronic pain conditions have attended inpatient pain management and rehabilitation courses at the Min.
Recognised as a national centre of excellence in the treatment of chronic pain, there was some concern that its move to a new location on the Royal United Hospital’s main site would serve to dilute its focus and expertise. However, both clinical staff and management were determined that the move should only serve to enhance its facilities and ultimately its reputation.
During our tour of the site in March 2019, when we were all required to wear hard hats and high visibility vests, every effort was made to explain to us how the finished centre would look and where all of the facilities would be located. While it was clear that considerable thought and planning had gone into the design of the building, it has to be said that it was a little difficult at that stage to envisage the end result!
Open for business
Six months on and the centre is finished and open for business. Over this last weekend, the 7th and 8th September, services were transferred from the old city-centre site to the new Therapies Centre – no longer a building site but a first class treatment facility.
Among the facilities provided are:
- Clinic and treatment rooms
- Education rooms for forums and classes
- Hydrotherapy pool which is twice the usual size
- Assessment and teaching kitchen
- Assessment bedroom and bathroom
- Skype clinic room
- Intervention room for guided injections and ultrasound
- Discreet stair assessment
- Gait analysis
In designing the Therapies Centre, consultation was key. Unusually for a hospital build, that meant consulting not just staff, but also patients. In addition to accessing first class facilities, it was realised that in order to fully-embrace their therapy, patients need to feel comfortable in their surroundings. To help achieve this, expert advice on art and design was commissioned. Some of that design reflects the 280 years of history behind the ‘Min’.
Expert chronic pain solicitor and BLB partner, Andrew Atkinson, said:
“Since we visited in March there’s been an amazing transformation. Clearly, considerable thought has gone into every aspect of this building and its facilities. What really stood out to me six months ago, even though the building was then just a shell, was the enthusiasm of the staff who clearly wish to continue and build upon the huge reputation earned by the old ‘Min’. Over the years many of BLB’s clients have benefitted from their expertise and I have every expectation that will continue in the future.”