Hospital opens indoor garden to help patients’ well-being and rehabilitation

A hospital has opened an indoor garden to support the cognitive function, well-being and rehabilitation of patients in intensive care. 

Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and its charity CW+ unveiled the new indoor botanical Sky Garden today.

The garden at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital was designed by award-winning landscape designer and CW+ Artist in Residence, Jinny Blom.

Ms Blom said: “Gardens, quite simply, improve our lives. To go and sit amongst plants and nature, especially in the context of a bustling hospital, has an immediate positive impact on stress levels.

“The Sky Garden will provide an irreplaceable source of respite to those in need.”

Trystan Hawkins, Director of Patient Environment at CW+, said: “We are thrilled with the Sky Garden which Jinny has so carefully designed.

“There is a wealth of research which demonstrates how natural environments have a real impact on patients’ wellbeing, recovery and mood. 

“Many of our patients, especially in ICU, are unable to leave the hospital, often for prolonged lengths of time, so having this space of tranquillity and nature will be invaluable.”

The Sky Garden is part of the redevelopment and expansion of the recently opened Adult Intensive Care Unit (ICU) on the top floor of the hospital, and has been installed adjacent to the ICU. 

Ms Blom, who was appointed by CW+ to design the garden, is a former Psychologist and Psychotherapist.

Developed through consultation and design workshops with former patients and ICU staff, Ms Blom’s idea was to create a space with multiple zones responding to the many differing needs of the ICU.

Lesley Watts, Chief Executive of Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are delighted to open the Sky Garden which will be a welcome green space to so many patients, and being located outside our new state-of-the-art ICU, will complement our patient-led approach to care in the unit. 

“We are very grateful for the generous donations from patients and our supporters. Their unfailing kindness, support and interest that they have shown led to the creation and funding of this marvellous indoor garden, which will provide a therapeutic and relaxing space for our patients and staff.” 

Pictured top: Staff and patients enjoy the new Sky Garden



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