Mental health success
A pioneering mental health crisis service run by Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust has received more than 14,500 calls in its first year.
The First Response Service – which can be contacted via the NHS 111 helpline and selecting option 2 - operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and gives people in crisis direct access to mental health advice. In the first 12 months the number of people visiting local accident and emergency departments has fallen by 21 per cent.
Dr Caroline Meiser-Stedman, consultant psychiatrist and clinical lead for the First Response Service, said: “It has been a very encouraging first year. The sheer number of calls has proved how much people have needed this kind of direct access to mental health professionals.
“Mental health issues can affect one in four people and the First Response Service has given people somewhere to turn to access immediate support. It has also meant they don’t have to go to accident and emergency departments which are often inappropriate for people with mental illhealth.”