Core 24/7 liaison psychiatry on its way to Medway
Date: 10 October 2017
From 10 October, transformation funding from NHS England will enable the Liaison Psychiatry Service at Medway Maritime Hospital to develop further in line with the Five Year Forward View – working towards a Core 24 service by 2020.
Following the joint bid from Medway Foundation Trust (MFT) and Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust (KMPT), the team will be providing mental health support to patients’ attending the Emergency Department (ED) or admitted to an acute medical ward at MFT.
Lauren Cane, Liaison Psychiatry Service Manager said: “The service has always worked very closely with staff at MFT to allow patients’ mental health to be treated effectively alongside any physical health problems. The service is also a point of call for MFT staff who may need help when dealing with patients with mental ill health. By combining physical and mental health services, we are helping to ensure patients have all their needs met whilst under the care of the hospital.”
In 2016, the Medway team provided support to over 2000 patients who attended the ED or who had been admitted to a ward. From January to September this year, they have already seen over 1900 people.
Caroline Selkirk, Accountable Officer for Medway Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “This is a very positive step in the treatment of patients with mental health issues. The funding should help to reduce waiting times for mental health assessments in the Emergency Department and ensure there are more staff available who are able to deal with specific conditions.”
Clare Hughes, Senior Matron in the Emergency Department of Medway Maritime Hospital said: “The work of the psychiatric liaison team is key to making sure that our Emergency Department functions smoothly. Emergency Department attendees with mental health needs often require higher levels of support and treatment, and this team are key to helping putting that in place and making sure that together we can deliver comprehensive care. We’re pleased that this vital team will be able to provide greater levels of support to our department and across the hospital, which will be a great benefit to those we see who need mental health care.”
Additional successful bids were made to develop services in the east and west of Kent which are planned for later this year and early in 2018.