12 May 2015

The Pride of Mental Health Awards

Pride of mental health awardsOur Mental Health Liaison Team in Swindon is launching the Pride of Mental Health Awards to help staff at GWH become aware of the mental health needs of patients.

The awards will recognise the work of an individual or team who has gone the extra mile to support patients with mental health needs (including dementia), and understand the impact of mental health on our physical wellbeing.

The winner of the first award will be announced on the 18 May 2015, which coincides with the start of National Dementia Awareness Week.

Every quarter, our AWP team will nominate another Pride of Mental Health winner.

This award is part of our wider "purple star" quality improvement initiative, which began in March 2015. The purple star is the symbol adopted by our Mental Health Liaison Team and is worn by members of the team to identify ourselves within GWH. Purple star magnets are also displayed on ward and patient head boards, with contact details for the Mental Health Liaison Team, so staff can directly access the team and the mental health pharmacy for advice and support. The purple star is a great way of showing that the wards are 'mental health aware' and that support is readily available.

The purple star is also used on a new ward-based information folder, containing patient information leaflets on Mental Health Conditions; staff contacts, advocacy support, and information on the Mental Health and Mental Capacity Acts. The folder will help both patients and staff, thereby promoting general awareness.

The Pride of Mental Health award winner will receive a certificate with the same "purple star" emblem.

Dr Leanne Hayward, Consultant Liaison Psychiatrist says "The purple star concept was designed with the intention to promote awareness and improve parity of esteem for those with physical and mental health conditions in the general hospital. With one in 4 people experiencing mental health problems at some point in their lives, we hope that it will become a recognised brand within the hospital to improve patient care, to raise awareness and reduce the stigma of mental health problems".

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