Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust and Scarborough Survivors are currently providing support workers during peak times to help relieve winter pressures on A&E staff and offer support to anyone identified as presenting with a mental health or suspected mental health condition.
They will also offer support to any person who is alone in the department and identified as vulnerable.
Service Manager for Scarborough Acute Hospital Liaison Service at Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The support workers from Scarborough Survivors have well established relationships with our crisis team, which will help improve communication between A&E and mental health services and strengthen the multi-agency approach to mental health care in the area.”
Andrea Woolcott, CEO at Scarborough Survivors, said: “We are very proud to be supporting our acute hospital colleagues in Scarborough throughout what is undoubtedly an extremely busy time for the NHS.
“Our dedicated staff team are greeting people as they enter and offering the time and space for people to talk and be listened to. This will support both patients and staff so that we can improve the experience of those in crisis that come through the doors of A&E.
“While we won’t be clinically assessing or triaging patients, we will be able to speak with them and collect important information that will not only free up the time of clinical accident and emergency staff, but also aid them when it comes to next steps and assessments.”
Dr Ed Smith, Care Group Director and ED Consultant at York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The Scarborough Survivors support workers that have been working within the Emergency Department (ED) at Scarborough Hospital, have been a hugely valuable addition to the ED team.
“They provide a much-needed function with respect to spending time with patients, particularly when the nursing team is under significant pressure.
"This has been welcomed by staff and patients alike and their expertise, dedication and commitment has already made a big difference to the service that we are able to offer within the ED.”
Scarborough Survivors will continue with follow up support both in the community and as part of a telephone service, in the hope that it will reduce reattendance in the future.
Scarborough Survivors is a service user-led charity with 25 years’ experience helping and supporting people with their mental health.
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