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10 November 2022

Can You Help the NHS Improve Mental Health Inpatient Care?

Service users and carers are being asked to help the NHS shape a new-look mental health inpatient service for Bedford Borough, Central Bedfordshire and Luton.
ELFT inpatient staff

East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT) wants to build a new mental health hospital in Bedford and redevelop existing patient services in Luton, providing two hospital sites to serve the populations of Bedford Borough, Central Bedfordshire and Luton.

Experts by experience are seen as vital in helping ELFT develop its programme so services are developed by clinicians and service users in equal partnership.

The programme will span services and care for children and young people, adults and older adults.

It remains in its early stages and ELFT is committed to ensuring service user voices continue to be involved throughout.

“We want to get this incredibly important piece of work right and the only way we can do that is by working side-by-side with experts by experience who can help us understand how care works from a service user perspective – and how it can be improved,” said Robin Campbell, Deputy Director of Integrated Care.

“We want to include carers, children and young people, adults, older adults and we also want our co-production to reflect the county’s tremendously diverse communities. Do help us by sharing your insight and expertise.”

Involvement opportunities are open to anyone with lived experience of mental health services from across Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), adult or older adult services.

Anyone interested in getting involved can contact Louise Stephens, our 
People Participation Lead for Inpatient Redesign, by emailing

Louise will be happy to discuss involvement opportunities that feel right for you.

There are opportunities to work alongside the inpatient development team to design inpatient spaces that are therapeutic, comfortable and safe.


You can provide as much of your time as feels comfortable.

Opportunities are flexible and can be adjusted to meet the needs of individuals.

The Trust payment of expenses and for people’s time is outlined in ELFT's service user reward and recognition policy.

During 2021 we produced a Case for Change outlining why we think a modernisation programme is the right thing to do – and asked for people to share their views and join the conversation before any decisions are made about taking these ideas forward.

The case for change engagement programme ran from August 31-October 5, 2021.

Our modernising inpatient care webpage includes more details, including the reasons why we think the modernising inpatient care programme will improve care.