Elmswell, opened in 2018, is a newly built house on the Mellieha site but it is distinctly separate with its own gardens, manager and staff support team.
The Elmswell service was opened under The Transforming Care Agenda, the governments response to the abuse of people with learning disabilities that took place at Winterbourne View Hospital. We support 5 individuals with Personality Disorders (PD) and Learning Disabilities (LD) who have been discharged from secure settings.
We have built a Psychologically Informed Environment (PIE) to work with these complex individuals and there is already a reduction in behaviour that challenges including deliberate self- harm.
We have an in-house psychology function delivering Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) to our service users.
Elmswell is made up of 5 individualised areas, each with their own bedroom, bathroom and relaxation areas. There is a communal lounge, kitchen and dining room. The building has a spacious outside area for gardening, growing vegetables, outdoor activity, socialising and relaxing.
There is also an outside area for rabbits and chickens. Each area has been designed in a person- centred bespoke way. Examples of this are: purpose-built flooring for a resident who is at risk of self-harming by picking at flooring to swallow; colour schemes chosen by the residents and additional sensory rooms designed for relaxation and practicing DBT techniques.
We involved the residents, had meetings with families and Ward Managers from their hospital settings to take account of all personal requirements and preferences. Elmswell is bespoke housing with adaptations to prevent deliberate self-harm with elements of the house being more robust to positively manage risks e.g. anti- ligature fixtures and fittings, fixed furniture with round edges etc. At the same time, care has been taken to make the rooms homely, modern and psychologically informed