A regional organisation has been chosen by NHS Improvement to lead the way in developing new methods of working in mental health.
Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust (NTW) will be a strategic partner in the development of the national body’s improvement programme.
It was impressed by NTW’s own work to examine what could be introduced in order to benefit the people the Trust supports.
Staff engaged with more than 2,000 stakeholders, held 27 workshops and explored 720 patient journeys so they could create a map to enable them to calculate the resources required.
New ways of working were introduced – including the 24/7 initial response service and the street triage team. They have resulted in a number of improvements.
In a typical week, the initial response service receives more than 1,500 telephone calls and it carries out rapid response visits, crisis assessments and home-based treatments, as well as providing advice and support to callers.
The street triage team, an initiative where police and mental-health services work together, operates from 10am to 3am and it is moving towards a 24-hour service.
This has seen a significant reduction in the number of inappropriate detentions to both hospital and custody, as well as enabling staff to follow up those who can be difficult to engage after initial contact with the police.
NTW chief executive John Lawlor said: “We’re delighted to be chosen as a strategic partner for this programme.
“This is a great opportunity and we hope that our work will benefit the wider NHS as well as the people we serve in the North East.”