From 1 May, 2017 a new mental health and wellbeing service for young people has been introduced across Telford and Wrekin and Shropshire.
The aim of the service is to provide a much wider choice of care options for those aged 0-25 and their families and carers, and to help them engage with local services and transform their emotional health and well-being.
The service is led by South Staffordshire and Shropshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (SSSFT) in partnership with Kooth (an online service that offers emotional and mental health support (involving 7 day/one to one chats, messaging service and live forums for children and young people), Healios (the only online provider of specialist mental health assessments, NICE endorsed psychological therapies and innovative wellbeing apps, all focused on the entire family) and The Children’s Society (a national charity helping children and young people at their most vulnerable).
Following extensive engagement with young people, parents, carers, staff, organisations and stakeholders, and a consultation last year, the new model is designed to reflect their wishes about how they want to see mental health provision develop, as well as building on existing capacity.
Where possible services will be co-located and will feature ‘drop in’ facilities, with access to immediate support and advice, as well as structured counselling and therapy. Using peer support and volunteers, there will also be clear links with current school projects, online information and support, to help provide timely advice and liaison for GPs and other medical professionals who are concerned about a young person.
Confirming the new arrangements, Carolyn Gavin Head of Operations Specialist & Family Services, SSSFT said: “SSSF Trust is the lead for the new contract provision of the 0-25 Emotional and Wellbeing service for the young people of Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin. The service will offer a greater range of choice in how young people and their families are able to access support, assessment and interventions. Our model will be delivered in partnership with The Children’s Society, Kooth and Healios and developed together with young people in order that the model continues to modernise and shape emotional well-being services into the future”.
Anna Hammond, Deputy Executive for Commissioning and Planning (Integrated Care) for Telford and Wrekin CCG added: “The introduction of this new service from 1 May is just the beginning. Building on previous successes, we will make sure that the care and support that is currently provided will continue as usual and care co-ordinators will still be available to discuss the improvements”.
Anna added:“Working with our new partners and their nationally quality assured services – will help us develop and enhance our services. Our ambition is to help improve emotional health and resilience and deliver the best mental health services possible when needed for the young people of Telford and Wrekin and Shropshire.”