In Mind: In the latest blog from Chief Executive Joe Rafferty he discusses the 'Your Wellbeing' range of resources

As we begin another extraordinary month, I want to start with my own very clear message to the whole Mersey Care community - it's simply a heartfelt thank you.

For patients and their families, coping with postponed or changed services and visits, and encountering staff in unfamiliar PPE, this thank you is for adjusting to variations on the routine and processes. For stakeholders such as members, governors and our many partners, it’s a thank you for bearing with us as we make adjustments and communicate differently.

And for staff, this thank you is for going above and beyond, being there for each other, stepping up and often working in unfamiliar places and in unfamiliar PPE. The backdrop has been a truly terrible pandemic. The delivery of care has been magnificent.

I've written before about being kind. Our Just and Learning Culture is for everyone in the organisation and I really believe that had Mersey Care not started its transformational journey a few years ago, we’d not have managed so successfully in all of this.

For every bump in the road and every difficulty, there have been many more acts of kindness and demonstrations of support and professionalism. Keeping kind and caring: it's what we do. Staff are doing them every day and it’s always a pleasure to hear and read your examples from managers, from colleagues and often directly from you online.

Our culture is not the only facet of Mersey Care that puts us in such a strong place. Our excellence in what we do and the unique set of skills our Trust possesses means we are leading in so many ways.

I said a few weeks back that this range of support could only come from the solid foundation of an organisation equipped with staff and skills in both mental and physical health, supporting vulnerable people in secure environments and across communities. That’s us and that responsibility is now available more widely than ever under the heading of ‘Your Wellbeing’.

 

Anyone can benefit from this range of services. As lockdown measures change, we're expecting higher demands on many services, particularly I fear in mental health. It’s been tough all round and vulnerable people have faced really significant additional challenges. We've been able to bring together really high quality and comprehensive self-help services.

The ‘Your Wellbeing’ services include:

  • The Life Rooms – various online videos that help with general wellbeing, healthy cooking and exercise
  • Talk Liverpool – psychological therapies to adults in the city who are feeling depressed or anxious. They offer videos on how the service works and various self help guides
  • Zero Suicide Alliance - a Gateway Module to their suicide awareness training has been launched which is designed to act as a free condensed introduction to the skills required to help those struggling with suicidal thoughts
  • 24/7 urgent mental health support – provides a freephone helpline 24/7 for anyone sixteen and over in need of urgent support, available all year round
  • Psychological support line – provides a listening ear, available from 8.00am to 8.00pm for anyone sixteen and over
  • Staff support - a counselling service uniquely for Mersey Care staff members who may be struggling with various mental health problems.

These show the best that Mersey Care can offer its community, and with our strong presence in the local health economy, we also benefit from our friends and partners. These include colleagues in Cheshire and Merseyside and our national presence as co-founders of the Zero Suicide Alliance.

It’s right we all come together and it’s right the NHS identity is clear as we work to keep people away from stretched emergency resources. The care and the expertise on offer in Your Wellbeing is a trusted, reliable and essential system to support vulnerable people at a challenging time. 

Joe Rafferty CBE

Chief Executive