Shaping the future of Mental Health services in Tower Hamlets - have your say

Local GPs and councillors are asking residents to give their views on a new approach they have developed with the community to support people with mental health problems in Tower Hamlets. 

The draft Tower Hamlets Mental Health Strategy, developed by the Health and Wellbeing Board, NHS Tower Hamlets Clinical Commissioning Group and Tower Hamlets Council, sets out a three year vision for improving the quality of life for people with mental health problems.

The strategy was developed after listening to the views of a range of community groups and local care professionals. The strategy takes a life course approach, setting out how the Health and Wellbeing Board intends to improve the mental health of children and young people, adults of working age and older people.

The strategy proposes a range of actions to help people to manage their own mental health and wellbeing, to ensure there are high quality treatment services available, and to support people to live well when they do develop a mental health problem.

The strategy also aims to challenge the stigma and discrimination around mental health. To close the period of consultation, the Health and Wellbeing Board will sign the Time to Change pledge, a commitment on behalf of all members of the Board to reducing stigma and discrimination in their own organisations.

An event to mark the closure of the consultation and the signing of the pledge will take place on 10 October at the Town Hall in Blackwall, the primary base for Tower Hamlets Council.

Dr Sam Everington, Chair of NHS Tower Hamlets Clinical Commissioning Group and a local GP, said:

“Mental health is something that affects us all, how we think and feel about others and ourselves, how we cope with difficult situations and how we manage our lives.

“We want to make sure that all mental health services in Tower Hamlets offer a good experience to patients, carers and families. To ensure we deliver top-quality mental health care, we want to hear the views of people who use our local services.”

Mayor of Tower Hamlets, Lutfur Rahman, said:

"I see how mental illness affects people in our community, many of whom suffer in silence. This strategy sets out the plans for the Health and Wellbeing Board to ensure that the stigma around mental health is reduced and local residents have access to the right services. We welcome feedback from the community to ensure the plans cater to the needs of those who will be using these services.”

Cllr Abdul Asad, cabinet member for Health and Wellbeing, added:

“Residents who suffer from mental illness should be able to access the support and services they require and be equipped to manage their mental health without fear of judgment. This strategy will be a key part of ensuring this happens and we welcome any views from residents on our plans. 

People are being asked to give their views through a consultation document. The consultation documents can be found by visiting www.towerhamletsccg.nhs.uk/Get_Involved

There are a number of ways that people can have their say completing an online survey at www.surveymonkey.com/s/HF5VGJN or by emailing their thoughts to mentalhealth@towerhamletsccg.nhs.uk.   

The consultation period started on 3 September and will run until 11 October 2013.

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 Notes to editors

  • The CCG has taken over much of the work that used to be done by NHS Tower Hamlets which closed down in March 2013, as did all primary care trusts (PCTs) across the country. The CCG’s role is to commission most local health services, from cancer care to mental health, hospital operations to prescriptions. All GP practices in the borough are part of this CCG. The CCG has a board, which meets regularly, and is chaired by a local GP.
  • More information about Tower Hamlets CCG can be found here
  • For more information contact Savaia Stevenson on 020 3688 1216  or Savaia.Stevenson@nelcsu.nhs.uk
  • Time to Change is an anti-stigma campaign run by the leading mental health charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness. The two charities work together, combining their knowledge, skills and expertise, to end the discrimination that surrounds mental health. For more information about Time to Change visit www.time-to-change.org.uk