Mental health care needs more resources to build modern hospitals that are fit for purpose and offer the best facilities for service users - that was the call from the guest speaker at our Trust Annual Members’ Meeting.
The President of the Royal Society of Medicine Professor Sir Simon Charles Wessely said that many mental health trusts are based in ageing buildings which need to be updated. He said greater government funding was urgently needed to bring about change.
Sir Simon, who led the independent review of the Mental Health Act, also called for greater research into the prevalence of mental health conditions in people with BAME backgrounds and talked about the need to give people a greater say in their care and treatment.
The transformation of the Trust’s estate was a major theme of the meeting, held at the Wellcome Trust, in Euston Road. The project was the subject of a video presented by our Medical Director Dr Vincent Kirchner. Chief Executive Officer Angela McNab explained how the new facilities would improve the care we offer service users.
Angela McNab also spoke about the Quality Improvement work at the Trust, and putting service users at the heart of everything we do.
She said: “We have a renewed focus on safety and have made it a fourth strategic priority. It is an important part of our Quality Improvement work, which is making great changes across the Trust.”
Angela McNab also thanked staff, and all members of the Trust, for their work during the year and said she was extremely proud of what had been achieved.
The Annual Members meeting was led by the Trust chair Leisha Fullick and also included a presentation on our Quality Report and our Financial Report. The meeting marks the start of the term of office for nine new governors, who were appointed following recent elections.
Our Lead Governor, Professor Wendy Savage spoke about the work of the governing body, including the Service Users’ Improvement Fund, which has paid for dance classes, a garden at Ash House, the community choir and other initiatives.
Before the meeting, there was an opportunity for people to learn about the services we offer, and the event was brought to a close with a wonderful performance by our Trust choir.
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In an emergency
C&I has moved the service we normally offer in emergency departments to our 24-hour Mental Health Crisis Assessment Service, at St Pancras Hospital. The service will see people in need of urgent care so that they do not have to go to a hospital emergency department unless they have an urgent medical need. Emergency departments are under unprecedented pressure due to COVID-19 – the illness caused by coronavirus. We are urging people in mental health crisis to telephone our 24/7 crisis line on 020 3317 6333 or contact their usual community mental health team. If service users attend the 24-hour Mental Health Crisis Assessment Service in person we will see you but we urge you to contact the crisis line in advance for advice to ensure you are only leaving home when absolutely necessary.