AN NHS unit which cares for people who need extra support whilst in rehabilitation has been moved from a care home to Barnsley Hospital.

The Acorn Unit provides care that prevents many hospital stays and supports patients on discharge from the hospital.

The unit is for patients whose intermediate care and rehabilitation cannot be provided in their own homes.

It had previously been located at Highstone Mews Care Home, in Worsbrough Common, but a report has revealed it has now moved to ward 12 at the Gawber Road site as it was ‘no longer fit for purpose’ for what users needed.

A report, which will be discussed by members of the South Yorkshire Integrated Care Board next week, said: “In June, the Acorn Unit (intermediate care bed-based facility) moved from Highstone Mews Care Home to be located on ward 12 at Barnsley Hospital.

“The move is part of a review of the Barnsley Intermediate Care Service (IMC) that highlighted several opportunities for service development focussing on improving service user outcomes, quality of care and sustainability.

“The facility at Highstone Mews was deemed no longer fit for purpose for what service users of the Acorn Unit required and therefore work was undertaken to identify a suitable alternative location.

“Service users of the Acorn Unit, with the help of Healthwatch Barnsley, were engaged to understand the requirements from a future site.

“Following a review of all health and social care sites in Barnsley, it was evident that ward 12 at Barnsley Hospital was the only available site that met the needs of service users when considering the service requirements and service user feedback.”

Patients usually stay in the unit for around two weeks whilst staff help them achieve optimal independence.

The report added the move to Barnsley Hospital is not a long-term solution for the unit.

“The move to the hospital site will therefore be a temporary move until a long-term location for the Acorn Unit is available,” it said.

“Service users, IMC workforce and the wider community will be further engaged and invited to help shape the future estate of the IMC service.”