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Inpatient rehab

Specialist neuro centre continues to invest



Chase Park Neuro Centre - based in Whickham, near Newcastle

A specialist neurological centre is continuing to invest in its offering as it increases therapy and rehab provision for patients.

Chase Park Neuro Centre has developed its facilities over several years, with a hydropool and gym area being added in 2007 to increase therapy opportunities for residents, but efforts have redoubled since being acquired in 2016.

Under the ownership of Dr Niraj Brahmabhatt, Chase Park has brought its external therapy and psychological support services in-house, with a neuropsychologist now based on site.

And in addition to its therapy support team, Chase Park – based in Whickham, near Newcastle, in the North East of England – is also investing in new limb training technology to increase physical rehab provision.

Having been in operation for over 25 years, 60-bed Chase Park has built a reputation as a specialist neurological centre, delivering strong outcomes in enabling residents to return to the community.

Under the guidance of Dr Brahmabhatt – who has worked in neurorehab roles in the independent sector and NHS, including at UCLH Queen’s Square – and registered manager Jane Webber, supported by a 90-strong team, Chase Park has developed its support significantly.

“Chase Park has always been known for its ethos and its rehab pathways, that has always been part of the fabric, and the spirit of the centre is very much about helping our younger adults in particular to move on to independent community living,” says Dr Brahmabhatt.

“Our offering has become more specialist over time and in the last couple of years, the decision to bring the therapy and neuropsychology in-house has been an important one.

“We are also going to be introducing limb training technology from Easter, which will add to the work of our team to offer new opportunities. It feels like the right time to do this, we have created the right rehab setting, and will come as a boost for staff and residents alike post-COVID.

“We are really focusing on therapy and are committed to raising the standards of what we do here even higher, and I think the level of outcomes we are achieving in terms of our younger adults getting back into the community helps to show that.”

Over the past year, Chase Park’s stringent safety policies and unrelenting commitment to protecting its residents has enabled the centre to remain COVID-19 free. Implementing lockdown measures and a ban on visiting from early March last year ensured Chase Park was already in control of its safety measures by the time national lockdown was enforced two weeks later.

“This early decision to lock down, and the fact we were very much on top of PPE requirements, meant we were very well prepared,” says Dr Brahmabhatt.

“Jane has been fantastic throughout and there were very strict processes and staff regulations introduced very early. We created a separate room for staff to change clothing when they arrived at work and sanitise, and barrier nursing came in very early too.

“We also decided not to take any admissions from hospital for the first few months – it was August or even September by the time we would take hospital patients, by which time testing was more available and infection control practices were well established. There was pressure to take new patients, but we felt that in the first few months we could not do that.

“We were very strict in our practices and our care staff were so committed they were managing risk even outside of the working environment. We know personal sacrifices were made and we are lucky to have such a team here.

“I must give great credit to the whole team, and particularly to Jane, for the work that has been done in keeping everyone safe.”

In the coming weeks, Chase Park hopes to return to more normality for its residents and staff, now that all have had the first dose of the vaccination with the second at Easter.

“We’re hoping to start using the pool with a lot more frequency and for our residents to get back into the community – we know how difficult it has been for them being here all of the time, but thankfully that should change soon,” says Dr Brahmabhatt.

“There will also be the opportunity to increase our capacity again, we had empty beds during the pandemic which will be recommissioned in the next few weeks. We had 30 residents with us since the outbreak last March and will be able to take more patients now.

“This has been a very difficult time for our residents and staff, but we know how difficult it has been for families, too. We will get back to allowing visiting as soon as we can, but our team have been a huge support in helping residents with the use of technology and iPads to keep in touch.

“The team have been brilliant – in delivering care, keeping our residents safe, and keeping everyone’s spirits up, we have got through the past few months with their fantastic commitment and dedication.”

Inpatient rehab

Chroma expands services in two Voyage Care homes

Music and arts therapies will be used to help support the emotional and psychological wellbeing of residents



Arts therapies provider Chroma has extended its contract with social care and support provider, Voyage Care, to deliver creative arts therapy services at two more of its care homes.

Residents at Devonshire House in Manchester and Cedar Road in the West Midlands will receive music therapy (MT), neurologic music therapy (NMT) and art therapy sessions to support their emotional and psychological wellbeing.

During assessment procedures, additional functional needs were identified in some residents, so NMT techniques are also being incorporated to facilitate opportunities to work towards other goals in joint working with speech and language and physiotherapy.

Devonshire House, in Ardwick, Manchester is a 24-bed specialist brain injury rehabilitation service with three wings. Residents are either active rehab, slower stream rehabilitation or long-term stay. Therapists work with all three residential sectors across the three wings.

Cedar Road is a nine-bed residential care home for slower stream, long-stay residents who receive the support they need to enable them to develop and maintain their independence and cognitive skills following a brain injury.

The creative arts therapists use a range of psychological and psychodynamic techniques to support the expression of memories and emotions in ways that do not rely on words. The forming of a therapeutic relationship is key to enabling and empowering individuals to express their emotions, manage overwhelming feelings and to process traumatic memories, safely.

Both individual and group sessions are used depending on the needs of the people supported.

The creative arts therapists also support individuals to meet functional goals through NMT techniques including Melodic Intonation Therapy (MIT), which uses rhythmic speech cueing to encourage speech, Rhythmic Auditory Stimulation (RAS) to help improve gait or Therapeutic Instrumental Musical Performance (TIMP) to prepare the body for functional movement.

Louise Houghton, ABI placements manager at Voyage Care, said: “Voyage Care is centred on social rehabilitation. The impact of loneliness and poor mental health, for care home residents, has been highlighted throughout the pandemic, which is why we are extremely happy to be able to provide these services within the already well-established multidisciplinary team and look forward to the positive impact we know it will make to our residents and their emotional needs.”

Chroma’s neurologic music therapist Claire Maddocks and art therapist, Jackie McVey, will deliver one-to-one sessions as well as support speech and language and physio therapists.

Claire said: “It’s exciting to have two arts therapy modalities in Voyage Care homes, and being able to incorporate them early on in a new home alongside the multidisciplinary team. It demonstrates the acknowledgement of the importance of arts therapies and the significant role they play in providing emotional and psychological support.”

Jackie said: “It is commonplace, in residential care homes, for long-term residents to experience loneliness to some degree and it’s important we do as much as we can to help reduce such incidences.

“Group therapy has proven itself a great way to promote interaction with others. We have previously delivered group music therapy sessions at Lorenzo Drive to help tackle loneliness, which was a resounding success so I have every confidence this art therapy group will too.”

Alongside one-to-one art therapy sessions, Jackie plans to create group sessions focusing on social interaction and social skills.

Since the arts therapies services began in September 2021, attendance to weekly sessions has remained consistently high, reflecting the positive impact sessions are having upon residents’ lives, both emotionally and psychologically.

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Inpatient rehab

Exemplar Health Care opens latest specialist care home

The complex needs care home in Pontefract also has a dedicated neuro-disability unit



Exemplar Health Care, a provider of specialist nursing care for adults living with complex needs, has officially opened its £3.4million state-of-the-art specialist care home in Pontefract. 

Bennett Court, based on Ash Grove in South Elmsall, will be Exemplar Health Care’s sixth home in West Yorkshire. 

The home supports up to 30 people and specialisea in supporting adults living with complex mental health needs, neuro-disabilities, brain injuries, spinal injuries and complex dementia. 

Bennett Court has the expertise and facilities to support some of the most complex and acute individuals, who would often be in a hospital setting if not placed with them, enabling them to stay in the community and reducing hospital and secure facility admission. 


Specialist nursing care for adults living with neuro-disabilities

Bennett Court has the facilities to provide specialist nursing care for people living with neuro-disabilities or neurodegenerative disorders. 

The home has 30 large bedrooms, each with an en-suite, across three ten-bed units. All three units have the provision for bariatric care. 

This small group living provides a homely and supportive environment, which is more responsive to people’s needs. 

Lily Unit is a dedicated unit for those living with dementia. 

And the home’s Poppy Unit is a male-only environment which supports up to ten adults living with complex health needs and mixed diagnoses, including neuro-disabilities, brain injuries, physical disabilities and those who have tracheostomies, ventilators and PEG feeds. 

Being on the ground floor and with garden access rooms, Poppy Unit is ideal for those living with a neuro-disability. 


Other facilities at Bennett Court 

Bennett Court has communal dining and living spaces as well as a cafe, therapy room, salon and large accessible garden.

The home hosts a restaurant-style dining menu which is developed with service users at quarterly Food Forums. 

This ensures that menus are varied, interesting and available to everyone, taking into account personal preferences, condition-specific and religious dietary requirements. 



“It is extremely rewarding to be able to support 30 local people with complex health needs” 


Speaking about the opening, Helen Lawson, Commissioning Home Director for Bennett Court, said: “I’m thrilled to have opened Exemplar Health Care’s newest home in West Yorkshire.

 “This community-based home will provide person-centered care and rehabilitation that focuses on maximising independence, building everyday living skills, and empowering people to live as fulfilled lives as possible.

“It’s extremely rewarding to be able to support 30 local people with complex health needs, and to provide over 150 stable and local jobs for those wanting to be part of a new team where you can make a difference and every day better.”