Better Together e-news Winter 2017-18

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 autumn.
In this issue you’ll read about our Staff Excellence Awards, new services making a difference for Lincolnshire people and other innovative projects.

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

Welcome from Chair, Paul Devlin

paul-devlin-chair.jpgI hope you will find a few moments to have a look at the winter issue of Better Together which shows how we continually improve LPFT services for patients and carers.

We have had a busy few months in the Trust with some exciting developments in the services we provide. These include the opening of our new Psychiatric Clinical Decisions Unit which expands support for people experiencing a mental health crisis, and which has already made a big difference in the lives of some of those in need of our help.

In this issue we also shed some light on an important way in which services in Lincolnshire are being changed to better meet local need – the Neighborhood Teams. They are an excellent example of the positive impact joint working between health and social care professionals from a range of organisations can have.

Increasingly we’ve been finding ways of involving people with lived experience of mental ill health in the design and delivery of our services. One example of this is our Peer Support Workers, who all have lived experince. Every patient I’ve spoken with who has come into contact with a Peer Support Worker has said what a tremendous difference they made to their recovery. So it gives me a great pleasure to welcome six more Peer Support Workers who will be working spoecifically with children and young people.

Earlier this month we celebrated some of the outstanding work of our staff and volunteers, through our annual LPFT Staff Excellence Awards. I always feel privileged when, on the night, I can say thank you on behalf of our patients, their families and carers, and on behalf of the wider Trust, to these hard working and compassionate teams and individuals. You can read about the winners here>>

Finally, I’d like to share with you that in January the Council of Governors agreed to offer me a second three-year term as Trust Chair from May 2018. I am absolutely delighted by this decision, and am privileged to be able to continue this role with LPFT. My first three-year term seems to have gone very quickly, but I can see how much the Trust has achieved since 2015 and I look forward to continuing to work with staff, volunteers, partner organisations, local communities, and those who use our services, to further strengthen the work of Trust in meeting the needs of local people.

Best wishes
Paul Devlin, Chair

Mental health crisis support expanded

The crisis help and support available for people with mental health problems across Lincolnshire has expanded thanks to a new service based in Lincoln.

Thanks to funding from the Department of Health and local NHS clinical commissioning groups, the Trust opened a new psychiatric clinical decisions unit (PCDU) in January and expanded its home treatment teams, to better support patients experiencing a severe episode of mental ill health or crisis.

The new service provides a safe space for patients to have a thorough assessment of their needs. Patients work with professionals to help decide the best treatment and support for them, whether this is returning home with intensive support from professionals, or being admitted to a specialist mental health ward.

The psychiatric clinical decisions unit can care for up to six patients at a time, for up to 24 hours. Enabling our staff to spend more time with patients to better assess their needs and decide with them and their carers what would help them through their current crisis or severe episode.

The unit is supported by additional staff in the community home treatment teams, who provide intensive support at home and prevent the need for hospital admission.

We hope by introducing this new service to positively reduce hospital admissions and number of patients travelling out of the area for hospital care.

Working together to reduce admissions

Feedback so far on the Trust’s new psychiatric clinical decisions unit has been positive, with only 11 of the 48 people referred to the PCDU so far requiring hospital admission. In all other cases the team were able to put in place robust care plans and additional home support; as well as get some of our partner agencies involved to provide additional input on key issues such as housing and benefits, to help keep the person safe in the community.

In comparison to this time last year when there were approximately 32 patients in mental health acute beds outside of Lincolnshire, the number of patients out of area has now dropped to an average of 18 people and continues to be an area of focus for the Trust and our commissioners. We have an ambition to eradicate non-specialist out of area hospital admissions entirely by 2021 and are already making good progress on this.

Neighbourhood teams - providing quality care in your community

A new way of working helps keep people out of hospital and supports them to stay well at home.

Teams made up of wide range of professionals and organisations including mental health workers, GPs, community nurses and therapists, social care services and voluntary organisations are already operating in some areas of Lincolnshire. By supporting individuals to self-care and self-manage, they prevent ill health and help keep people out of hospital. In many cases, thanks to support from neighbourhood teams, patients were discharged from the hospital without unnecessary delays.

Early feedback from Gainsborough neighbourhood team has found that people were better working together and they were able to faster and easier identify patients in need of additional support at home. Staff have also praised the ability to have joint meetings where all professionals can sit together and talk about a particular service user and their needs.

Clare Credland, lead for the Gainsborough neighbourhood team, said: “Neighbourhood teams look at a person as a whole; their clinical and non-clinical needs and whether they need support not only with their health but also for example with housing, benefits or even social activities.”

This new way of working will be implemented in parts of Lincoln, Boston, Grantham, Spalding and Stamford by April 2018.


Neighbourhood teams in practice

Shirley is suffering from mental ill health and multiple physical health problems. She was admitted to acute mental health ward and her recovery was progressing well. She was ready to be discharged back home. Unfortunately, her return home could potentially be delayed. Ward staff were reporting that Shirley’s mobility has declined and she was relying on a wheelchair. Shirley was worried about going back home as her property did not have a ramp to allow wheelchair access.
Shirley agreed for a community psychiatric nurse to discuss her case at a neighbourhood team meeting. This encouraged other professionals to try to find a solution. Shirley was referred to the community occupational therapist and she was granted leave from hospital so that an assessment could take place. Following the assessment it has been decided that a ramp will be installed in time for preparation for her discharge.

Former service user Tri’s for LPFT

Former LPFT service user, Sebastien Rosse, has completed his first triathlon raising over £2,000 for the Trust’s Charitable Funds.

Sebastien formerly used the services of the Crisis Resolution and Home Treatment team in Boston, and completed the Brighton and Hove triathlon to raise money to give back to the people who cared for him. The triathlon involved a challenging 750m sea swim, a 20km cycle and a 5km run along the beach lined promenade.

Sebastien suffered with depression for 20 years of his adult life and received dedicated help from the crisis team during difficult periods in his illness. He explained that their patience and understanding helped him to discover his own strength to recover.

Sebastien said: “The team were dedicated with their support. They phoned every morning, visited every night and helped deal with my confusion and suicidal thoughts. The care I received from LPFT staff really helped me to discover my own strengths."

A focus and devotion to cycling also helped aid his recovery, he explained that, “A friend encouraged me to sign up for the triathlon; it felt like a way to maintain my new found wellbeing and it was also a way to offer sponsorship money to the organisation that pulled me past my demons.”

Sebastien presented a cheque to the Board of Directors on 28 September 2017. The money raised will be spent directly with the crisis team to help enhance the service they offer to others in a crisis.

Staff and volunteers recognised for Making a Difference Everyday

Staff and volunteers supporting people with mental health issues and learning disabilities were celebrated at the eighth Staff Excellence Awards on 2 February at the Lincolnshire Showground.

Over 200 nominations were received from colleagues, managers, patients and carers who wanted to recognise LPFT staff.

Trust Chair, Paul Devlin said:

These awards are a great way of recognising the hard work of our staff and volunteers. All the finalists and everyone who received a nomination should feel immensely proud of their achievements.

Among those receiving awards on the night was Volunteer of the Year, Neave Taylor, a musician who performs to patients at the Rochford Unit, Boston.

Neave enjoys performing to the patients because he believes music does a lot to help people with mental health issues.

Rebecca Dixon, Ward Sister on the Rochford Unit said:

I’ve known Neave since I was a student nurse when he was a member of a recovery music group. I asked him whether he would like to perform to patients on our unit and he was more than happy to get involved. Neave’s dedication is admirable; he always performs with enthusiasm and a smile. He is not only extremely talented; he is treasured by the patients who look forward to his performances.

This year’s People’s Award nominated by patients and carers went to Donna Bradford, Service Manager for Rehabilitation.   

Rachel Kitchen was one of the many people who nominated Donna. She said:

Donna has worked hard to ensure that carers are included in service user care, making a huge difference to their lives. We now have educational material, carer packs and support groups. In addition, the Trust received national recognition for how they include carers in service user care. A lot of this is due to Donna’s persistence, interagency working and listening to the carers’ needs.

New recruits support young people with their mental health

Mental ill health can affect anyone at any time, but despite growing understandings of mental health issues it can still be a difficult topic of discussion.

LPFT is making it easier for their young service users to talk about mental health, with the help of peer support workers who have lived experience of mental health issues. The Trust has recruited six young adults to support service users accessing Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

CAMHS Peer Support and Involvement Lead, Abbie Futter, explained that the peer support workers will offer young service users a peer with a deep emotional understanding of what they may be experiencing.

The peer support workers will support our young service users as an equal who they can relate to, not a medical professional. The peer support workers will help young people to engage with our service, particularly the harder to reach groups. They will also help the young people transitioning out or across services, as we recognise this is a difficult time for young people.

The peer support workers began their induction into the Trust late last year and are now working in teams across Lincolnshire.

To find out more information about the support for young people struggling with mental health problems in Lincolnshire visit


Rhiannon and Rebecca's story

Rhiannon Done, one of the six peer support workers explained her reasons for wanting to help other young people in Lincolnshire.

“I have suffered with mental health issues myself, and they worsened in my teens at school. I didn’t have the best support system when I was suffering, and eventually I began using mental health services. My care coordinator was a friend and a lifeline to me, and I decided that I wanted to be that for someone else.”

Another peer support worker enthusiastic about providing empathic support for young people is Rebecca Sampson.

She said: “When people suffer with mental health issues, they don’t ask for it; it’s not their choice. I believe that if you do recover from mental ill health, you can use that by offering people help; by making a good thing out of something that was bad.”

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