This survey explored how Community and Voluntary Sector organisations can complement the new Wellbeing Service during its re-procurement for April 2017. It aimed to find out how the CCG can learn about the skills and added value CVS organisations can bring to complement services, to ensure best value for money and most importantly their joint aspiration to secure the best arrangements for patients.
The CCG values the contribution that community and voluntary sector (CVS) organisations make to people’s mental health and wellbeing in the city, especially support for those who have been traditionally excluded, and they would like to work with more community and voluntary sector organisations as partners in the system.
Existing contracts that are in place for the provision of an IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies) service for adults and a practitioner service which supports adults with mental health problems in primary care settings, are due to be re-commissioned by the CCG in April 2017.
The service will support adults with mild or moderate mental health problems ages 18 and over who are registered with a Brighton and Hove GP. The service will treat patients experiencing common mental health disorders such as:
– Panic disorder
– Generalized anxiety disorder
– Simple phobias
– Post-traumatic stress disorder
– Health anxiety
– Social phobia
– Obsessive compulsive disorder
Our recommendations are:
- Work with the Wellbeing Service to ensure they are fully accessible for disabled and Deaf people. This includes:
- Physical access to buildings, providing information in alternative formats, and offering BSL interpretation when needed.
- Providing Deaf and Disability Awareness Training to all staff
- Provide alternative options for service users to access the Wellbeing Service, which might include home visits to those less able to leave their homes in order to visit the Wellbeing Service.
- Encourage disabled people to use peer-support when being referred to the Wellbeing Service, including friends and family and peer-support groups.
- The Wellbeing Service needs to have greater awareness of what support is available locally for disabled people who are referred to them, in order to better complement the service. In particular, this should include free and low-cost services and peer-support groups provided by the Community and Voluntary Sector.
- Ensure that a referral to another service is followed up on by the original referrer in order to ensure that it has been successful in supporting the client, and the person is not left alone again after a failed or incomplete referral. See the Citywide Connect referral guide ‘From Me To You’ at http://www.thefedonline.org.uk/citywide-connect
- The Wellbeing Service needs to take a more person-centred approach using the social model, not medical model.
- Greater awareness and clarity of information is needed for Community and Voluntary Sector organisations on how The Wellbeing Service can support disabled people, with clear referral pathways, and clear information on how it can support the client or service user.
- Preventative support services are needed to support disabled people with low or moderate needs to:
- Reduce the negative impacts on their mental wellbeing
- Reduce the impact of people accessing more expensive mental health services further down the line.
- Currently, longer-term services are being called-for by disabled people who are struggling to access preventative services. The Wellbeing Service needs to consider funding alternative CVS providers to meet this need.
- Wellbeing Service professionals need training and awareness-raising on what Community and Voluntary Sector support is available to complement the service, with clear information on how to refer a client or service user to other organisations. This should come from attending the Citywide Connect Hub events, and through the use of www.itslocalactually.org.uk – The Fed’s online activity and group listings website.