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New Lancashire Mental Health Service Offers A&E Alternative

Posted on the 1st December 2016

People who are experiencing a mental health crisis now have an alternative to A&E as a local health provider links in with national charity to launch a new service.

Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust is working in partnership with Richmond Fellowship to open a crisis house in Lancashire to provide emergency accommodation for people in mental health crisis.

The service will operate from a purpose renovated property in Chorley will provide a short stay intervention service fully supported by trained staff. The service will open in Chorley from April 2017 with the Trust hoping to open a second house in Burnley at a later date.

Lisa Moorhouse, Adult Mental Health Network Director at Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust said:

“We are really looking forward to working in partnership with Richmond Fellowship to provide crisis house support in Lancashire.

“There is an increasing demand on mental health services in Lancashire and as part of this we have been working hard to determine what services are needed to ensure people are well supported. Richmond Fellowship provides a number of crisis houses across the country which offer a safe, recovery focused intervention for people in the community.

“The crisis house in Chorley will ensure that people in crisis are accessing the right service at the right time, as well as providing an alternative to those presenting themselves A&E in crisis. We are hoping to open a second house in East Lancashire later next year.”

Joe Redmond, managing director for Richmond Fellowship (North), said:

“We’re delighted to be working alongside Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust to provide two crisis houses in Lancashire.

“Elsewhere in the country our crisis houses have been a huge success in providing key support to people experiencing a mental health crisis where A&E admission is not the right thing for their wellbeing.

“Our crisis houses are fully supported by trained staff and give mental health teams more options for crisis management – ultimately saving the NHS time and money.”

Research shows that up to 43% of people can be better supported through a short stay in a crisis house as opposed to A&E admission.

Harry first experienced a mental health crisis whilst at university in Leicester. He was given a choice between staying in the crisis house or being admitted to hospital and sectioned. He said:

“After quite a while of suffering with my mental health it was slowly building up. I wasn’t getting the right treatment and support.

“My community treatment team realised how severe my mental health problems were getting and I was advised to come to the crisis house.

“It was the first time I’d felt safe in a while. The supportive environment which is the crisis house was one hundred times better. Being admitted to the crisis house was a real turning point in my life.”