West Suffolk hospital patients to benefit from new 24-hour mental health support for all ages
“They listened to me, took me seriously and helped me create a plan to manage my mental health in a dignified way.”
These are the words of a patient who recently saw the mental health liaison team at West Suffolk Hospital which, from April 1, will be available to patients of all ages 24-hours a day, seven days a week.
The 16-strong team, employed by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust and which acts as a link between physical health and mental health services at the hospital, recently increased their hours and made themselves available Monday to Sunday.
Until recently, their services were restricted to 13-year-olds and above, but now they will be able to see those aged 12 and below.
Natalie Bailey, West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust head of mental health, said: "This is really positive news.
"We really value the close working relationship we have with the NSFT team, and this extension of the service will help us provide quicker and more effective help to those of our patients who need our support with their mental, as well as their physical, health."
Gemma Fretwell, team lead, said: “There is a countrywide ‘Core24’ model for liaison mental health, which recognises the need to provide care 24/7, for people of any age.
“We are available to all departments across the hospital, including A&E, ensuring that patients get the support they need for both their physical and mental health.”