The Trust has joined forces with North West Ambulance NHS Trust (NWAS) and Lancashire Constabulary to respond and support people in mental health crisis.
‘Psynergy’ is a four month pilot taking place in Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre and will include a member of the Trust’s Mental Health Crisis Home Treatment Team, a Paramedic and a Police Officer forming as a crew on a NWAS vehicle. The team will commence their duties at Blackpool DHQ and will work together to jointly respond and provide specialist care for people presenting in crisis.
The pilot is aimed at lessening the need for those in crisis to attend A&E and will involve the necessary services and personnel attending incidents together in order to be able to most suitably triage and offer the right care and advice which in turn may reduce demand on resources and services. The team will work seven days a week from 4pm until midnight, which was identified as a key time for mental health callouts through NWAS and the police.
Lisa Moorhouse, Head of Operations at Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust said:
“We are really pleased to be working in partnership with Lancashire Constabulary and North West Ambulance Service to jointly respond and support people who are in mental health crisis through this pilot in Blackpool. This approach will enable us to ensure that people receive the right care at the right time for their needs. We hope that this pilot will change the way that we deliver care to people in Blackpool and we look forward to continuing to work together in the future.”
Blackpool Inspector Pete Hannon said:
“This is all about doing the right thing and being there to support people when they need us. It ensures that the right people with the right skills are in the right place at the right time. A lot of our time is spent responding to mental health callouts. We anticipate that it will divert patients away from A&E – as well as ultimately providing greater support to those who need it.”
Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw spent a shift with the team and said:
“It was really useful to see first-hand the support that this provides to those who need it most, helping those in crisis and often avoiding the need to go to A&E.
"The police are often becoming the emergency service of first resort when people's lives fall apart, and this response vehicle helps free up police teams quicker and makes them available to attend other incidents.
"This is partnership working in action - the trial is extremely encouraging and shows that by thinking differently and working together, we can deliver the support that people need and deserve whilst also reducing some of the demand that officers face at a time of ever increasing pressures on the service. “