07 April 2016
Swindon is a beacon of good practice
This week marks an important milestone
for NHS Mental Health Care in Swindon. Seriously mentally ill
patients in Swindon have not been placed in out of area acute care
beds for the past year, achieving a national target 18 months ahead
The Independent Commission on adult acute mental healthcare
published its report, known as the 'The Crisp Report', in February
2016. The Report identified a target to phase out the
practice of sending acutely mentally unwell people far away for
treatment by October 2017, but by working collaboratively to
redesign mental health services, Swindon Clinical Commissioning
Group (CCG) and Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership
(AWP) have today confirmed that they have not needed to admit a
patient out of area for their care.
For patients in Swindon this means they are more likely to be
admitted to a bed in Swindon, rather than being transferred to
either an acute bed elsewhere in the region, or a private bed
possibly even further away.
Previously, beds have been used all around the country, often
resulting in lengthy waits, long journeys, delays to commencing
treatment and difficulties for families to visit. These
factors have the potential to impact upon the patient with an acute
mental illness, possibly making them feel even more unwell and
The situation was very different three years ago where there
were 18 patients placed in out of area acute beds as the wards in
Swindon and within the AWP area across the South West were
Simon Manchip, Clinical Director for Swindon at AWP said: "We
recognised a long time ago the need for improvement within our
mental health provision and since 2014 there has been much
collaborative working between all stakeholders to re-design mental
health services in Swindon.
"This has really been down to the superb effort of the staff at
Applewood, bed management and the intensive team. There has been
much hard work, not only to turn around the situation, but also to
sustain the position, and we want to take the opportunity to
celebrate this achievement, which has allowed Swindon to become a
beacon of good practice."
Thomas Kearney, Associate Director for Urgent Care at Swindon
CCG said: "Through close partnership working, Swindon CCG and AWP
have radically improved the experience of mental health services
for most vulnerable patients. We know that not having to travel
long distances to get the right care makes a real difference to the
families and carers for our patients.
"Learning from this success, we will continue to work with AWP
to improve mental health services in Swindon and Shrivenham over
the coming years."