West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership (WY&H HCP) have published the findings from in-depth engagement with people in long-term restrictive complex rehabilitation inpatient settings. The Partnership is now launching the first of three new services that have been developed in response to the findings.
Men and women with the most complex mental health needs experience significant variation in their access to and experience of inpatient rehabilitation services, lengths of stay and recovery outcomes. Many people in complex rehabilitation placements are far away from home resulting in them being ‘dislocated’ from their home areas and local services. All too often this results in longer restrictive lengths of stay in inpatient care settings. Nationally people with a serious mental illness experience high levels of inequality which adversely impacts their physical health and they have higher rates of premature mortality than people in the general population.
WY&H HCP carried out a consultation and engagement exercise with people placed within these services and their carers with the aim of better understanding this group of people and how they might be better supported closer to home and, where possible, in the community.
Several themes were identified from service users’ experiences such as loss, relationships, transitions such as between home and hospital, the quality of the therapeutic environment, lack of hope after hospital. A clear theme to emerge from listening to carers is the emotional toll supporting a loved one in a complex rehabilitation hospital has on the carers’ own lives. This provides a challenge for them to manage their own mental health and wellbeing with the individual and family resources they possess. The findings of this work created a compelling and powerful case for change which WY&H HCP have been working on for several months and now able to start implementing a new model for complex rehabilitation.
The first service to open from the Complex Rehabilitation Project will go live in April. The new CREST (Community Rehabilitation Enhanced Support Team), named by service users, will engage with teams across Kirklees, Calderdale and Leeds and with people currently in complex rehabilitation placements. The team’s first priorities are to begin developing and supporting discharge plans for people in complex rehabilitation hospital and to make links with colleagues and across the West Yorkshire.
Dr Sara Munro, CEO Lead for WY&H HCP Mental Health, Learning Disabilities and Autism; and CEO for Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust said:
“This is an important piece of work that has contributed tremendous value to our thinking as we develop better services for people with complex mental health needs. Peer support workers have been able to capture and reflect back the powerful and emotional feedback from service users and carers which we are acting upon. We will continue to work alongside our service users and carers to ensure that their thoughts and ideas about interventions that improve quality of life, create hope and optimism are embedded within new service proposals. We are working to ensure that specific areas of concern raised about cultural needs and support are followed up and we will continue to promote the value of co-production to our work.”
More information about our work in Complex Rehabilitation and the engagement reports can be found on our website https://www.wypartnership.co.uk/our-priorities/mental-health/mental-health