New Admissions Unit Opens at Castle Craig to Meet the Challenges of the Coronavirus Pandemic

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In response to the Coronavirus pandemic, Castle Craig rehab clinic has launched an innovative, separate admission and detox unit to treat drug and alcohol addictions.

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The separate admissions unit, Kirkurd Unit, was created in response to the unprecedented Coronavirus pandemic and the increased demand on NHS resources and the closure of Private and NHS detox beds and rehab clinics around the UK.

The Kirkurd Unit strives for enhanced Covid-19 screening at all stages of admission and detox and a 7 day social distancing period before admission to the main clinic of Castle Craig.

With our unique location, 50 acres of land, away from crowded urban areas, our clinically proven treatment programme and duty of care to our patients, we are ideally suited to provide this service.

This dedicated unit was pioneered by our Major Incident COVID-19 Response Team, led by Dr Margaret McCann, CEO and Professor Jonathan Chick, Medical Director.

Secluded rehab clinic     

Screening and Admission

New admissions must answer a series of infection-control screening questions days in advance of admission to establish they are Covid-19 symptom-free. Referrers are required to ask the screening questions we provide as well as check the temperature of the potential patient and if possible conduct a swab test for Covid-19. 

On arrival, new patients go straight to Kirkurd House to start their admissions process and accompanying family members can drop them off at reception and return straight home. Patients receive two Coronavirus swab tests while at the new unit. We do not admit patients displaying symptoms of Covid-19.

After 7 days in this separate admissions unit, our patients proceed to our intensive rehabilitation programme at the Castle Craig main clinic or in a house in Recovery Gardens.

Testing for Covid-19

We have protocols in place for swab testing in any suspected case. So far any tests carried out at Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh laboratories have proved negative. We are a Covid-19-free hospital and aim to remain so through best practices of screening and hygiene measures.

Detox Facilities at the Unit

The Kirkurd Unit contains 10 single, en-suite bedrooms, two sitting rooms and a medical centre. One sitting room doubles as a room for groups, lectures, pilates and Mindfulness meditation. Castle Craig’s 50 acres of grounds provide the ideal location for accompanied outside walks away from the rest of the hospital patients. Patients eat together in a shared dining room. 

We have an experienced medical and nursing team used to managing all types of detoxification from alcohol and drugs.

Kirkurd Unit medical centre is staffed by 1-2 registered nurses and one healthcare assistant as well as our onsite 24/7 Medical Officer and a Senior Therapist. 

Much of the initial therapy at Kirkurd is provided on digital platforms so patients can join the rest of the community at Castle Craig.

Alcohol detox | Drug Detox

Our Commitment to our Patients and Referral Partners

Castle Craig Hospital is committed to fulfilling a duty of care to our patients and providing a safe place for those people who continue to require admission for the urgent treatment of addiction during this time of heightened awareness of the transmission and effects of the Coronavirus. Patients are admitted to Castle Craig from the UK and overseas.

We have been working closely with Health Protection Scotland, NHS Borders and local public Health advisors and we are confident we have all necessary procedures in place. 

More Information

For more information on the Screening and Admissions Procedures please contact our Admissions Department

Visit for our latest Covid-19 Preparedness & Response Updates.

Statement issued: 20 March 2020

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