Steps2change boosts referrals for talking therapies in Lincolnshire with new chatbot

Published on: 25th July 2022

Almost 1,200 people in Lincolnshire have referred themselves to steps2change NHS talking therapy services using a new chatbot assistant via the steps2change website.

In the two months since the chatbot launched, feedback from service users has been incredibly positive, with over 93 per cent saying it helped them to access care. 

steps2change is a free NHS service provided by Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, which provides mental health services and some learning disability and autism services in the county. 

The service provides a range of evidence based talking therapies for problems such as depression, anxiety, post-trauma reaction, panic, phobia and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).

People who have used the chatbot have said how easy it is to use and on average, it takes just over six minutes to complete the referral.

Users said:

“The ease of access and lack of interaction with a person made my anxiety much more manageable.”

“It made the process of doing a referral much less scary and this feature gives it more of a personal touch.”

Nick Harwood, LPFT Associate Director of Operations in the Adult Community Division, explains how it works:

“This is a great option for referral to our service, making it easier than ever to take the first step towards accessing mental health support. People can refer themselves online, whenever and wherever they like. Not only that, the chatbot can also offer information about additional support services such as the Lincolnshire Mental Health and Emotional Wellbeing Helpline.” 

To refer yourself online or read more about how steps2change services can help, visit