Issue 1

Staff ‘working as one to stay connected’

Dr Dan Dalton, our Trust’s Chief Medical Officer, said staff were working as one to put in place core initiatives to continue to stay connected with service users and carers. Service users remain well-connected with their mental health teams, who are going above and beyond to care during the coronavirus pandemic. Dr Dalton said: “I’m incredibly proud of the way our staff are responding to the pandemic. We are all facing an unprecedented challenge, yet people are pulling together to do their bit to make a difference by working flexibly, taking on extra shifts or coming back to work following retirement. We continue to offer the best service we can during what is a difficult time for everyone.”

Inpatient wards

Tablets will be available on wards to enable carers to video call and take part in review meetings. Service users will be able to video call family. Extra admin support is being provided for carers to stay in touch.

Community Teams

NSFT is working hard to adapt services based on public health and Government guidelines. We are trying to enable as much direct contact with case-holders as possible and some necessary face-to-face visits are taking place, using personal protection equipment (PPE) and social distancing. The contact numbers for care teams are still active. Wherever possible, contact is being maintained remotely by telephone, Skype etc. We are endeavouring to work together with other services to ensure the most vulnerable service users have access to support.

A little inspiration

Tough times never last, but tough people do
Robert H Schuller J

And the people stayed home. And read books, and listened, and rested, and exercised, and made art, and played games, and learned new ways of being, and were still. And listened more deeply. Some meditated, some prayed, some danced. Some met their shadows. And the people began to think differently. And some people cared for us for this we are truly thankful. With kindness and care Service User Suffolk

Let’s meet Jay Chandler

Favourite food: I love Caribbean home cooking. My favourite dish is mac and cheese bake. Job: Carer Lead, Ipswich IDT She says: I love working with and supporting carers. Caring for someone with mental health issues can be demanding, isolating, challenging and rewarding. Therefore, providing our carers with the support, information and advice they need to help relieve these pressures makes a huge difference. Empowering, advocating and ensuring that carers are taking care of their own health and wellbeing is my main goal.

Q and A

Will my family member be visited as normal? As per Government and Trust guidance we are not currently making any face-to-face visits in the community, unless in a crisis situation or to administer medication. All support is taking place over the phone. Many staff are working from home, making regular contact with service users, offering support and a listening ear. Service users and carers can call teams and speak to the duty worker to raise concerns. What has been put in place on the ward to protect my relative from getting COVID-19? Staff are doing everything they can to stop the spread of the infection, taking temperatures regularly and monitoring other physical symptoms. Please be reassured that your relative will be looked after and will receive care and treatment for their mental and physical health needs. In line with Government guidelines, service users will only be able to leave the ward once a day, for exercise. Activities are still being provided on the wards, plus advice on handwashing and social distancing. How can I access a Food Voucher? Food vouchers can be accessed through the team that supports your cared for person. Your local council and CAB (Citizens’ Advice Bureau ) hold information on Food Banks and other local services offering help’. How can I pass on information regarding the person I care for? Staff are still manning the phones. Use the number you have for the team or access this through Hellesdon main reception: 01603 421421.

Services to support you

Carers Matter Norfolk 0800 083 1148
Talk & Support
Recovery College online
Achieve (Prince’s Trust) Coronavirus support for young people
Gingerbread COVID-19 guidance for single parents
Advice on coronavirus and wellbeing #TakeCareOfYourMentalHealthAndWellbeing

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