Agenda item

Mental Health Transformation

This item is to support the scrutiny review on Access to Medical Appointments.



The chair introduced the item  by explaining this will  contribute to the scrutiny review on Access to Medical Appointments.


The  report and presentation circulated in advance was presented by the following : 


  • Carol Yates – Partnership Southwark Project Manager
  • Sumeeta Dhir – GP, Live Well Mental Health Clinical & Care Professional Lead, CCPL Advisory Group Co-Chair
  • David Mirfin – Consultant Psychiatrist, Associate Medical Director (SLaM), Live Well Mental Health Clinical & Care Professional Lead



The chair then invited questions and the following points were made:


·  There is linked patient and carer race equality framework  to deliver a more equitable service to Black and Minority Ethnic people . The service will know that is delivering improvements when indicators of inequality such as the over representation of disadvantaged communities in forensic services start to reduce, there is more early treatment and more equal outcomes.


·  There is engagement work led by  Black Thrive , alongside looking at both service delivery and Mental Health Transformation through the race equality lens – this means looking at issues such as  addressing cultural barriers , racism and systematic bias.


·  There is work with GP Federations / Primary Care Networks. An example is the mental health practitioner in the Lister Service , as GP practice.


·  There is an emphasis on supporting people in the community to prevent crisis , and to reduce the need for A & E. There is recently launched mental health crisis team in Lambeth. The problems for people visiting A & E in mental health crisis were acknowledged .


·  A sanctuary service has been added to the Wellbeing Hub to meet the needs of people in crisis.  


·  There is digital option that has opened up access in Primary Care for mental health appointments which has shortened wait times . NHS staff said that that many patients are getting more comfortable with online  appointments , however they did acknowledged problems for some people. They said there are  not enough resources, or the money that it would take to expand the workforce, in order to deliver all the appointments face to face , or to meet all the demand. There is a reduction in GP’s , and resultant lack of capacity, with the NHS direction of travel being to recruit a broader range of  roles to deliver Primary Care,  such as Physician Associates, and Health and Wellbeing Coaches.  


·  The Wellbeing Hub is for people with  low to moderate mental health needs, and has a physical location and a mobile service working in the north and south of the borough .


·  The Wellbeing Hub  has been around for a couple of years so has a profile in the community , and there are presently outreach support roles being recruited to enable people to be seen in the community .


·  There is communication strategy for the Mental Health Transformation project.


·  There will be more work with Partnership Southwark to have an ear to ground.


·  Members commented that the  pandemic has impacted on  older people with increased social isolation and loneliness.  They added that there are voluntary services that can combat that this, and suggested that links are made with these generally,  and a particular offer was made to link with Southwark Pensioners Centre .  The NHS staff agreed that the pandemic has increased social isolation and  many cases this  has been traumatic with bereavement and loss of social circles, which had been particularly acute for people with conditions such as schizophrenia. They welcomed the offer to link with the voluntary sector.


Supporting documents: