The NHS has lined up an extra event for people to have their say on proposals to redesign specialist mental health services for adults and older people experiencing severe or long term mental ill-health.
The interactive session, one of seven in total, will take place at Macclesfield Town FC on Thursday 3rd May from 2.30pm until 5pm.
The events are part of a 12-week consultation relating to services available to a population of 480,000 people across Eastern Cheshire, South Cheshire and Vale Royal.
Specialist mental health support is provided for approximately 7,000 adults and older people each year in these areas. Ninety five per cent of that care is provided in the community.
Dr Ian Hulme, GP with Meadowside Medical Centre in Congleton and clinical lead for mental health at NHS Eastern Cheshire CCG, said: “We are committed to giving people every opportunity to comment on proposals designed by local doctors and nurses, with service users and carers, to significantly improve mental health support, with a focus on early prevention and more choice.
“That’s why we have organised an additional consultation event, following feedback, at which people will be able to comment on the proposed care model and three consultation options, and to ask questions of the local NHS.”
Dr Hulme added: “The events so far have been very well attended, and we expect that to continue with the remaining four sessions.”
Dr Teresa Strefford, clinical director for commissioning at NHS South Cheshire CCG and NHS Vale Royal CCG, said: “Most people can be supported very effectively in the community with the right range of services.
“Ninety five per cent of the 7,000 people we currently support with specialist mental health needs receive that care in the community and we want to improve it.
“The new model of care we are proposing would provide new services so that there is better access for people to help keep them well and active in the community.
“It would also provide much greater choice of services for those in, or at risk of, crisis, and support people with dementia and those who care for them to stay in their own surroundings.”
Dr Anushta Sivananthan, consultant psychiatrist with Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, added: “People have told us they want more personalised care, more support in the local community, and one point of contact for crisis care.
“They also want a choice of support in different places – for example, at home, in a drop-in centre or in a crisis bed and that they don’t want to be in hospital unless it’s absolutely necessary.”
Dr Sivananthan continued: “We carried out extensive engagement to develop the options included in the consultation.
“As part of the consultation process, we invite people to come forward with other ideas and solutions and we will take these into account.
“We value the feedback we have already received and we now ask service users, carers and the general public to get involved with this public consultation and help us shape better services for the future.”
The consultation started on 6th March 2018 and runs until 29th May 2018.
No decision will be made until after the consultation findings have been fully considered, and any new service arrangements would be introduced gradually into 2019.
For more information, visit www.easterncheshireccg.nhs.uk where the online survey and details of all the public events are published.
For more information about the options being considered, click here.