There’s still time to have your say about adult mental health services in Norfolk and Waveney, with local people being urged to join the conversation to help take the plans to the “next step and make it real.”
A draft strategy has been developed with input from thousands of local people as part of a review of adult mental health services being overseen by the Norfolk and Waveney Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP), which is made up of partners in health and social care.
Now, Rt Hon Patricia Hewitt, Independent Chair of the STP, together with Dr Tony Palframan, Chair of the STP mental health forum, appear in a short video published online to discuss why the strategy is needed and some of the issues affecting mental health services.
You can watch the video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NmemwIqtEwI
They also urge more local people to give their views on the draft strategy which can be found online here https://www.healthwatchnorfolk.co.uk/ingoodhealth/stp-mental-health/
In the video, Patricia Hewitt calls on local people to look at the strategy and comment on it, saying: “Give us your comments online, through a letter, or in a meeting. Please get involved with us so we can take this to the next step and make it real.”
People can also give their views about adult mental health services via an online survey https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/NWMHStrategyDraftFeedback/
She also explains the need for the draft mental health strategy, saying: “We have spent a lot of time over the last four of five months listening to patients and service users, carers and staff, and what we are hearing is people are very pleased with the support and the caring that they are getting from a lot of NHS staff but overall the services simply are not good enough.
“They are much too complicated, people are having to wait far too long, it’s not working in the way we need it to work to really support people for their mental health needs. So the strategy is to get as much priority as possible for prevention and for supporting people for their mental health and their wellbeing in the community, in their GP practice, in community services and in the neighbourhoods where they are living – that is at the heart of this strategy.”
The video talks about what is likely to change as a result of the mental health review.
Patricia says: “The big thing that is going to change with this strategy is that we will have mental health, Primary Care, the GPs and their staff, community services, district nurses, occupational therapists, physiotherapists and social workers, all working together in neighbourhood teams.
“What we want to do now is work with staff and with patients and service users and carers to design in much more detail how that will work most effectively.”
Tony says he would like to see care much closer to home. “I would like to see care that is responsive and able to deal with needs much quicker than it does at the moment. We believe strongly that prevention does work and prevention is not just prevention at the earliest stages but prevention as people deteriorate, so early intervention is key for us.”
The mental health review began in mid-2018 with the aim of understanding the views of adult service users, their families and carers, staff and volunteers.
As well as analysing an enormous amount of data from across the system, the STP held 42 separate events between August to December 2018 of which seven targeted users, carers and the public, 25 targeted health & social care staff and 10 targeted community and voluntary groups, reaching more than 2,500 people in total. In addition to these events, more than 1,000 people have so far taken part in the online survey.