Better Together e-news Autumn 2016

Welcome to the latest e-Newsletter version of your regular members’ magazine – keeping you up-to-date with all the Trust news and developments that have taken place since the summer.

In this issue you’ll find a roundup of some of our recent events, an update on the progress to our new Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit and much more.

Click on each of the items below to expand the news story.

Welcome from the Chair, Paul Devlin

Dear Members

paul-devlin-chair.jpgAs I write this, the summer has faded and the year is getting autumnal as we head into the colder months. These times always bring additional pressures to the NHS, and I’m sure this year will be no different.

It’s been a busy time as always for the Trust and there’s plenty to update you on in your latest Better Together newsletter. I hope you find it interesting and informative.
High on the agenda is our continued work with other parts of the NHS and local authority to ensure we are able to provide the best services we can for the people of Lincolnshire in the years ahead. A key part of this is the countywide Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP).  At the time of writing it has been submitted to NHS England, who is managing the publication process of STPs very closely. We anticipate them approving public publication around Christmastime.

I’m pleased to say that our team who has been engaged in the STP has worked very hard to ensure mental health and learning disability services feature heavily in the draft plan.  
Elsewhere, it is exciting to see work commencing on our new Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) in Lincoln.  There is more on this later in the newsletter, but needless to say we are all looking forward to being able to keep more patients closer to their homes, particularly at times of great need.  The PICU will allow us to do this for those people who are experiencing some of the most severe episodes of mental ill-health and who require our specialist and expert help and support.
Our continued championing of equality and diversity issues is also something I am very proud of.  We know all too well that mental ill-health can affect any of us, regardless of our background and identity and we strive to ensure our services can meet diverse needs.  Also, there is interesting research that shows that organisations with diverse staff and volunteers tend to perform better than less diverse ones.  If our staff feel supported and able to be themselves at work, our patients will feel more at ease too.  As I regularly do, I’d like to thank all our staff and volunteers, from whatever background, for their contribution to LPFT and to supporting our patients, their families and carers. I am proud that we welcome staff and volunteers from all backgrounds, and that we serve a similarly diverse population of potential patients and service users.

This commitment was clearly underlined at our Mental and Physical Lived Experience (MAPLE) staff and allies conference and recent Race Equality event, both of which involved all three local NHS Trusts.  There were crucial messages shared and pledges made at both events, such as the importance of making organisations safe for people to open up about health-related problems at work, and why race equality is so vital to sustain a 21st Century NHS trust.

Our support to members of the Armed Forces community is something else for us to be extremely proud of.  We were delighted to receive the MOD’s Bronze Defence Employer Recognition Scheme award and sign up to the full Armed Forces Covenant recently.  Supporting those with military links – including staff who are Reservists, and staff with family members on active duty – is important to us, as is helping those who may be struggling with transitioning from military to civilian life.  We also recognise the skills and experiences Forces veterans can bring to our workforce. I know there is much more for us to do in this arena, and look forward to sharing more about it in the months and years ahead.
Finally, it was an absolute pleasure for me to open this year’s Annual Public Meeting once again.  It was a privilege to see so many people from the local community sharing the same passion I have for mental health services.  There was a real buzz about the event with people swapping ideas about how we can all work together, and it was fantastic to meet with so many patients, members and governors.  Close relationships with the county’s other health organisations and local voluntary groups will be vital in the coming years as we continue to focus on how we can provide quality joined-up services to help people on their roads of recovery from mental ill-health. I look forward to working with anyone willing to stand alongside us in achieving the best we can for the people of Lincolnshire.
With my very best wishes as ever.

Paul Devlin, LPFT Chair.

Breaking down the barriers to psychiatric intensive care

Renovations are already well underway at our Carholme Court base in Lincoln, as work begins in earnest on our new Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU).

Lincoln based building firm R G Carter are on site and making good progress, with internal works taking place which will help transform the building into the new bespoke 10-bedded male unit.

The PICU will provide specialist support to help people who are suffering from serious episodes of mental ill health, enabling them to remain closer to home for treatment.
The Trust’s existing adult mental health wards at the Peter Hodgkinson Centre in Lincoln and Ward 12 at Pilgrim Hospital in Boston cannot currently provide the intensive level of support required, meaning patients often need to travel out of county to receive it.

It is hoped that the PICU will be operational by the summer of 2017 and recruitment for the unit is already taking place.  Around 40 jobs are expected to be created, with the Trust looking to employ a number of nursing and medical posts, in addition to occupational therapy, healthcare support worker, administration and housekeeping roles.

As well as staffing the PICU we also need to give it an appropriate name, and this is where you, our members can play a vital role.

We’d like you to suggest suitable names for the unit, ones that will stand the test of time and sit well alongside our other well-known county bases.

We already have Charlesworth, Conolly, Langworth and Brant Wards.  Maple Lodge in Boston, Ashley House in Grantham and Discovery House in Lincoln with its Fens, Wolds and Vales wards.

Now we’re looking for fresh ideas for a name befitting of such an important project so please send your ideas to

A shortlist will be drawn up by our project team and patients currently on inpatient wards, who will then decide on the most appropriate name.

Meet your brand new governors

We’re delighted to welcome 10 brand new governors to our Council, after a raft of successful elections over the summer.

Our governors represent your views as members and don’t forget that you can attend our regular Council of Governors meetings to hear discussions and keep up-to-date with all the Trust business.

Meetings are held in public and the next one takes place on Thursday 19 January 2017 at the Learning and Development Centre, Unit 3, The Reservation, East Road, Sleaford, NG34 8GN.

For more information visit the meeting dates and minutes section of the Trust website>>

In the meantime, meet our new governors below…

Lisa Tooth (Public Governor – South Holland) 

I have volunteered to support children with physical and learning disabilities since I was eight-years-old and have lived experiences through my own health conditions and those of my family.

I am passionate about everything I do and feel my work and ‘lived’ experiences give me empathy with service user needs to help me champion their issues effectively.

I believe there is always hope and understand that something others may perceive as being a ‘small thing’ can be a ‘massive thing’ for service users and their families.

Carole Stewart (Service User Governor)

I know that mental health and physical wellbeing are two sides of the same coin and I am keen to promote links between GPs and NHS mental health services.

I would like to use my life experiences and skills as a communicator to deliver an accessible mental wellbeing service to our community.

I have recently retired and volunteer with St Barnabas and I have also been involved with setting up a local Good Neighbour Scheme.

Jarrard Cooper (Service User Governor)

I am passionate about breaking down barriers and promoting health services that de-stigmatise mental health issues, particularly for men.

I am involved in a ‘Wellbeing at Work’ programme with Lincolnshire Police, addressing mental health in the workplace.

In becoming a governor, I want to show that people living with mental health difficulties do contribute to society, can contribute to the work-place and do add value into their families and friendships.

Jane Avison (Service User Governor)

I have been attending the Trust’s Eating Disorders clinic for the past two years as I suffer with Anorexia. Using the service has made me passionate about giving something back to the Trust.

I feel I would have empathy towards the needs of other service users and so would be well suited to listen to them and be their voice for the Trust.

Susan Swinburn (General Carer Governor)

I have been a carer since the age of nine as the eldest of three children helping to support my mother care for our terminally ill father who latterly developed mental health problems.  I also cared for my mother and 21-year-old son who were also diagnosed with terminal cancer.  

I am Vice Chair of Lincolnshire Carer and Young Carer Partnership and work as Operations Manager for South Lincolnshire Blind Society, helping ensure people living with sight loss have timely emotional support.

As a governor I would be able to use my direct experience from a patient’s perspective, a volunteer, an NHS worker and from working with vulnerable people.

Ingrid Gill (General Carer Governor)

Having been an employed professional, volunteer and advocate for a service user over several years, I have seen numerous changes to the services provided.

Being an LPFT governor is a constructive way to make a difference to the local community and to put people first.  As a qualified nurse, psychotherapist and carer advocate I feel I have the right values, qualities and positive attitude to fulfil this interesting and responsible role.

John Clarke (Older Adults Carer Governor)

I was a governor about three years ago until I had an operation which stopped me. I was also a very active member on the town council and former three-time Mayor.

I am married to Margaret and have two children, one of whom lives at home and suffers from mental health problems.  I am a voluntary driver and take people to hospital and doctors surgeries.

Sophie Ford (Staff, Corporate Services Governor)

I am LPFT’s equality and diversity lead which means I have an over-arching view of the Trust and work with staff and patients to ensure that as a workforce and service provider we are fair and accessible to all.

My role brings me into contact with many staff regarding a variety of issues, so feel well placed to determine and represent staffs views and feelings at the Council of Governors.

I believe in openness, transparency and inclusion; and see the Governor role as a mechanism to achieve this across the Trust.

Jacky Tyson (Staff, Older Adult Services Governor)

I have worked for LPFT since 2011.  I am based at Witham Court and work within the inpatient OT department.

My role provides opportunities to visit other Wards and liaise with colleagues from varied disciplines across the Trust. I often represent the Older Adult Service at relevant forums and conferences which gives me the opportunity to meet a variety of professionals, service users and carers, gaining a wider view of LPFT and the services it provides.

Lisa Steel (Nominated Stakeholder - SHINE Network Governor)

Lisa sits on the Steering Group for SHINE, Lincolnshire’s mental health support network and one of LPFT’s key partners.  One of the network’s main objectives is to advocate mental health issues on behalf of service users across the county.

SHINE’s ethos is that there is no point in standing on the side lines – involvement is key to effecting change and so the network has gracefully accepted their governor place.
We look forward to working with Lisa over the coming months and welcome her to the council along with all our other new governors.

In addition to welcoming our new governors, this summer we also said a fond farewell to two departing governors - Alan Daniels and Celia Evershed - who both reached the end of their full tenure as governors.

We'd like to thank them both for their dedication and service over the years and wish them all the best for the future.

Recruiting the mental health nurses of the future

The Trust has been busy recruiting nurses recently, with a number of new initiatives helping to boost our workforce over the past few months.

It was great news to announce our involvement in the trialling of a new nursing support role – the nursing associate – which will sit alongside existing support workers and fully qualified nurses to deliver more hands on care for patients.

LPFT is among one of the first eleven sites in England to have been chosen to deliver the first wave of training and Director of Nursing and Quality, Anne-Maria Olphert said it was great news for the Trust.

We are really pleased to be able to develop this new role in organisation. It will help us to adapt to the increasing demand we are seeing on services, while we continue to support people through severe episodes of mental ill health.

Meanwhile the Trust’s recent careers event at Discovery House in Lincoln saw a number of job offers being made to our 3rd year nursing students, allowing us to continue the nurturing of talent for the future.

We want to keep hold of the staff that we train, who aspire to the 6Cs and have a clear passion for providing the highest quality mental health care, with our service users’ best interests at heart.

All of the above is in addition to our continued sponsoring of some of our Health Care Support Workers into their nurse training.  The first cohort of five started their BSc (Hons) Nursing Studies (Mental Health) course at the University of Lincoln in September.  Applications are already open for the next cohort who will start in September 2017 and we look forward to receiving them.  

To see all of the Trust’s current vacancies visit the Work for us section of the website

Volunteers' long service recognised

At our Annual Public Meeting this summer, staff, patients, members and governors all joined together for an afternoon of innovations and celebrations.

Part of the proceedings was dedicated to recognising some of our long serving volunteers, who give up their valuable time and effort to help out in a variety of Trust services.

Some much deserved recognition this year went to Neave Taylor, Matthew Russell, Chris Dabbs and Councillor Ron Oxby, who all received their 6 Years’ Service Award certificates.

Neave Taylor 

Mr Taylor started volunteering in 2010 entertaining our older adult patients in a music group at the Rochford Unit in Pilgrim Hospital, Boston.

Over the years he has been involved in a number of musical activities at a variety of venues across the Trust, whilst maintaining regular visits to Rochford.

An experienced guitar player and singer, Neave loves his music and has always encouraged our service users and patients to get involved and sing-a-long.

Matthew Russell 

Nothing is ever too much trouble for Matt. A dedicated volunteer, he is currently based at The Gatehouse in Lincoln, where he helps out with the mailing and filing.

Since he’s been with the Trust he has undertaken a variety of tasks, including helping out in a coffee shop, teaching computer skills to patients and supporting a video project.

He is always willing to turn his hand at new activities and has also branched out into other volunteering directions locally.

Chris Dabbs

Following redundancy from the retail industry, Chris decided to try his hand at volunteering and hasn’t looked back.  He became an enthusiastic helper for the older adult patients at Witham Court in North Hykeham, getting involved with befriending, reading poetry and prose and assisting with ward activities.

He’s a popular member of the Witham Court team and enjoys his role there.

Councilor Ron Oxby, Stakeholder Governor from Lincolnshire County Council

Ron joined the Council in October 2009 when he was appointed as one of two Stakeholder Governors.  He brings insight and perspective from the local authority which helps the governors to understand its position on public services and spending.

In addition to his regular attendance at the quarterly Council of Governors meetings he has also been a member of the Nominations and Remuneration Committee since 2011. His valuable contribution has seen him involved in a number of recruitment processes for senior Trust appointments including the Chair, Chief Executive and Non-Executive Directors.

It was good to talk on World Mental Health Day

The Trust marked this year’s World Mental Health Day celebrations with a host of events across the county focussing on the importance of talking about our feelings and opening up to someone.

LPFT staff, patients, carers and governors all joined together and were on hand to meet members of the public to discuss how people can access local mental health services and the kind of support we provide.

Our Community Mental Health, Older Adult and Recovery College teams supported a fundraising event in Sleaford with our steps2change talking therapies staff hosting a ‘Tea and Talk’ event with the patient involvement group voice2change in Boston.

Meanwhile in Lincoln, we had staff at local supermarkets helping to spread the word about the services available at LPFT.

Emma Bristow, Recovery College coordinator said:

It was great to get out and about, meet the public and let people know that mental health matters and that we’re here to support them.  We had lots of interest in the courses on offer at the college and enrolled a number of people for the new term.

For staff, the Trust’s Mental and Physical Lived Experience conference (MAPLE), in partnership with Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust, brought together like minded individuals to discuss the importance of disclosing health conditions in the workplace.

In addition to hearing personal journeys from visible Trust leaders, conference delegates also enjoyed presentations from Dyslexia Action, LPFT’s Wellbeing Through Work team and a resilience session from the Staff Wellbeing Service.  

News in brief

Brand new website for steps2change team

Our countywide service has just launched its new website – helping to dispel the myths surrounding talking therapies.

Become a Flu Fighter and get your jab

It’s that time of year again – the clocks have changed and the weather is a little colder, but fear not, the bug-busting Flu Fighters are back.


Portal of care about to open

Lincolnshire is set to improve the way people’s information is shared between health and care workers, via the launch of the innovative Care Portal.


Sign up to make Lincolnshire Suicide SAFE

A new suicide prevention plan is asking local organisations to sign up to a charter and pledge their support to help recognise the signs and triggers for those at risk.


New CDU planned for Lincoln

A psychiatric Clinical Decisions Unit will be created at our Peter Hodgkinson Centre in Lincoln, thanks to a slice of £406,000 government mental health funding.