A scheme that provides increased support for people in a mental health crisis is to continue in Greater Manchester, and is being celebrated this week.
The scheme, the first of its kind in Greater Manchester, was run in partnership with Greater Manchester Police and Greater Manchester West Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (GMW). Police officers worked alongside a specialist mental health nurse to assess people in a mental health crisis and help people who need further support.
The principle element of the scheme, which was piloted for 12 months, was to integrate a mental health nurse into Trafford’s Integrated Safer Communities Team based at Stretford Police Station and the ultimate aims of the scheme, which has been supported by the Home Office Innovation Fund Grant, were to improve the quality of care to individuals in a mental health crisis and reduce the cost and resource demand to the police and the NHS.
It was found that the introduction of the specialist mental health nurse resulted in quicker assessments for people affected by a mental health crisis and improved coordinated case management, thereby reducing officer time spent dealing with people with mental health problems.
The outcomes of the project were:
- Reduction in police demand resulting in a 15% reduction in volume of calls (64% reduction in resource demand)
- Reduction in 999 calls to the North West Ambulance Service resulting in a 20% reduction in call volumes
- Reduction in attendances at the hospital emergency department resulting in a 42% reduction in volume of attendances
- Reduction in hospital in-patient admissions resulting in a 58% reduction in the number of bed days
- Reduction in the number of interventions from the GMW Crisis Resolution and Home Based Treatment Team resulting in a 50% reduction in call volumes.
Early findings from an independent evaluation, completed jointly by New Economy with the Safer Trafford Partnership, estimated the scheme could save emergency services and the NHS in excess of £150k per annum.
The unveiling of the report will be made by Jim Liggett, Divisional Superintendent for GMP on Friday 5th June 2015.
Front line police officers have said they found the role of the specialist mental health nurse a key benefit in their day-to-day work and being able to draw on expert advice has brought out confidence amongst the officers who have previously lacked a real understanding of mental health services.
Speaking ahead of the event, Jim Liggett, Divisional Superintendent for GMP said, “This is a huge step in helping people suffering a mental health crisis to receive the right care and support. The introduction of the specialist mental health nurse has been beneficial to the Police and has provided people in a mental health crisis with the support that they need from a professional in the field of mental health. The success of the pilot is testament to the commitment from all agencies involved”.
Helen Cutts, Head of Operations for Clinical Services at GMW added, “It is clear that the introduction of the specialist mental health nurse has had a positive impact and has been a success in making a difference to individuals involved in the projects. Feedback shows that individuals felt that they had someone to interact with and were listened to.
“This new approach from the police and health services will mean faster assessments and better care for people who are often suffering a severe mental health crisis.
“Service users who have been asked about their experiences reflect that this new way of working introduces a personal relationship that benefits them, providing a means to interact, be listened to, and begin a supported journey that provides stability and leads towards recovery”.
Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd said: “This is another example of the innovative work we’re doing in Greater Manchester to transform mental health crisis care and put support in place much earlier. The initial success of this scheme demonstrates how working differently and more closely with other partner agencies including the NHS and ambulance service, can have a positive impact on peoples’ lives.
“This initiative isn’t just about reducing demand on an already stretched police service and other emergency services. It’s about supporting those vulnerable people who have previously slipped through the net and encouraging them to accept help and provide them with the right tools to address their issues and improve their quality of life.”
There will be a photo call taking place on Friday 5th June 2015 from 1-4pm at Stretford Police Station with all partners involved in the scheme. Please email Katie.Dolan@gmmh.nhs.uk or call 0161 772 4313 to confirm your attendance.
Notes for Editors
1. Case studies can be found in the Project Evaluation and Cost Benefit Analysis report which was evaluated by New Economy with the Safer Trafford Partnership.
2. Greater Manchester West Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust provides district mental health services in Bolton, Salford and Trafford. It also provides inpatient alcohol and drug recovery services in Prestwich as well as community services in Trafford, Salford, Cumbria, Blackburn with Darwen, Wigan and Leigh and Central Lancashire.
3. Greater Manchester Police formed in 1974 and serves more than 2.5 million people covering an area of 500 square miles. GMP Is split into 11 divisions – Bolton, Bury, North Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, South Manchester, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford and Wigan. There is also a specialist division based at Manchester International Airport.
4. Photo call for the scheme will be held on Friday 5th June 2015 from 1pm – 4pm at Stretford Police Station. Please email Katie.Dolan@gmmh.nhs.uk or call 0161 772 4313 to confirm your attendance.
5. The scheme pilot took place for a period of 12 months from April 2014 to April 2015 and partners involved included: Safer Trafford Partnership, Greater Manchester Police, Greater Manchester West Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, Trafford CCG and Trafford Council.
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