SW Newsletter #53

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Hello Lovely Members

Welcome to the latest issue of our new snazzy, funky newsletter, thanks to our great designer Tim.

This corker of an issue is bursting with news and pictures of magnificent developments in our members’ wards. Many thanks to all of you who have contributed these details of your exciting work and thanks in advance to all of you who will feel inspired by seeing these to send us your own great examples.

For those of you who don’t happen to read The Jewish Chronicle or Barnet, Enfield and Haringey trust’s website, I went and collected your OBE last month. Thousands of brilliant staff on 600 member wards have had your phenomenal work, in almost impossible circumstances, glamorously recognised. And Buddy and I got to collect it on your behalf. Thanks!! Everyone asks what the Queen said to me and, unbelievably, I instantly forgot!! Oops.

Sorry. But I do remember that, after I’d managed to pull off what I have to say was rather a credible, almost dainty, curtsy, Her Majesty asked a very pertinent question about mental health inpatient care. I strenuously deny all reports that it took three Yeoman of the Guard and two soldiers who’d gone to collect their medals for heroism to drag me away a mere 25 minutes into my reply about the superb work of inpatient staff. (It was only two security guards.)

image1Here’s a pic of us with Star Wards’ guru, Malcolm Rae (aka National Joint Acute Care Lead) who himself got an OBE, for his outstanding contribution to inpatient care. (Buddy is being uncharacteristically camera-shy, so her sparkly tiara is hardly visible.)

Love Marion and Buddy

[email protected]

Grimsby merges crisis and inpatient services



Grimsby is where it’s at. Did you know:

At its peak in the 1950s, Grimsby was the largest and busiest fishing port in the world.

Grimsby is known as Europe’s Food Town (perhaps not by the folk who live in Emmental or in Banoffee Pieville)

Grimsby has the only Blue Cross Animal Hospital outside London (thanks Buddy for that helpful contribution to a newsletter about mental health inpatient care)

If you’ve read the recent blog, you’ll also know that they’ve just opened a stunning hotel spa hospital, Harrison House.

This isn’t all that’s dazzling in Grimsby acute care. This is what they’ve boldly done to improve acute care co-ordination and delivery by merging their inpatient and crisis services.

In February 2009 we disbanded the Crisis Home Treatment Team and allocated the staff to be part of the inpatient establishment. Now ALL qualified staff at band 6 and above do crisis assessments, and home treatment is delivered from band 3 Nursing Assistants up to me which now provides a continuity of care from assessment to inpatient and/or home treatment package. Some staff voted with their feet, most are loving it, we are growing band 5’s into band 6’s, the junior staff are bloody marvellous.

We based it on Yarmouth and Waverly NHS – who are working to this model. We had a major restructure to do it with 2 band 8as leading the service on Diamond and Sapphire (Diamond being me!!), then we have four band 7 service leads who all have a specialist interest. All of us work 40% managerial and 60% clinical which means the most senior staff have time to lead by example eg, doing crisis assessments with junior staff, leading with home treatment and taking shift leader roles on the wards.

We presented it to our regional forum in January as lots of people are interested in what we are doing. It’s been really hard and still is – it’s a major change to how we have all been working. The Director fully supports it and Mike Reeve Acute Mental Health Manager led on this. This is all in preparation to moving to a new purpose build hospital in February 2010.

Ellie Walsh. East Service Manager

[email protected]

How Recovery Bracelets came into being


rcMany thanks to Kim Parker for sending me details about this brilliant initiative which applies recovery model philosophy to fashion, enhancing patients’ self-esteem, providing enjoyable occupation and generating income. How creative and practical is that?

We were in a Star Wards meeting planning the Recovery Folder (a transforming Star wards idea) Launch event. We were thinking of ways to promote the event and three key people ideas came together. Our activity coordinator (another transforming Star wards idea) spoke about the creative use of colour and two other, Amy our senior practitioner and Sean our service user who wrote the Star wards news letters generated the bracelet idea and how we could use colour to convey Recovery. The group, and patients in OT made 100s of the bracelets and we gave them away at the launch event. Because they were so popular we started to think about how we could sustain it in the long term.

At this point we handed the idea over to our vocational rehabilitation services and there a group of services users created new designs and the second generation of bracelet was born. They produced the brochure, based on our original designs. This is paid work for the service users. We now have little do with the project other than to give them lots of support and have a nice warm smile every time we see someone wearing them. It is a perfect example of how two very different services can work together, but Star wards was absolutely the inspiration behind it.”

Kim Parker
Senior Nurse, Quality Improvement, Professional and Practice Development Team

[email protected]

TalkWell Developments in Birmingham


twIt’s been really exciting to hear about the characteristically enthusiastic use that our members are making of TalkWell. Patrick Cullen from Birmingham describes the creative and energetic way that he and their programme management team are developing the implementation of TalkWell’s ideas. Watch out for great conversation on Birmingham wards!

I have been running TalkWell workshops here in Birmingham and Solihull for our non-registered staff. We’ve had 100 attendees over last couple of weeks and it has been well received. It was so positive – the attendees from each ward have been set a challenge to come up with a new ‘talking point’ on their respective wards. The winners will be getting a lunch for the ward.

I have also set up a TalkWell forum on the suggestion of some of the attendees – to meet up every six weeks to keep the spirit of the training ongoing, for people to reflect and to share practical ideas. The thinking was that the workshops provided a great springboard and overview, but staff stated in their feedback that they would like more in depth reflection on conversing with people with different presentations and needs. It’s going to be run on an open space approach. We will use each forum to reflect on conversation with people with a different presentation – i.e. people experiencing voices, people who are withdrawn, people who self harm etc.

We are having a prestige launch of the BSMHFT Talkwell Forum on the 15th March at a special afternoon team where the ideas will be reviewed, certificates presented and an overall winner for the challenge will be selected.

It’s great to see the talking therapies side of the initiative starting to roll isn’t it? It has created a real buzz around the place and made that group of staff feel very valued.
On a personal level, I haven’t enjoyed anything at work so much for ages.

If Star Wards’ members need any support they are welcome to get in touch with me and I will do whatever I can. [email protected] or 07985 882191

Talking of awards, BSMHFT must be front-runners for creating the sector’s and perhaps the world’s longest job title: Patrick is Professional Head of Nursing and Performance in the Acute Services Programme of the Adults of Working Age Division at BSMHFT.

Introducing self-medicating on Sandpiper Ward, Northamptonshire

ppWe’re slightly obsessed with wards supporting patients to manage our own medication so that we’re self-medicating by the time we’re off back home. So it was great to hear from Christine Edwards, Clinical Team Leader at St Marys Hospital, Northamptonshire about their developments with introducing this process. The information below, a Powerpoint presentation about these developments and other information about self-medicating are downloadable from our website.

Sandpiper ward is a treatment ward, with its main philosophy being to promote patient recovery, for patients to return to optimum level of functioning within the community.
Many of the patients have already been taking medication in the community before their admission to hospital.

Once in hospital we take away this responsibility from them, understandably essential whilst acutely unwell – however patients do improve and upon discharge from hospital are given back responsibility of taking the medication themselves.

It is proposed that patients self medicating on the ward will make the patient feel more a part of the treatment process, allow them to get a better understanding of the medication, whilst still under some level of monitoring. The aim is that the nursing team will be able to see how patients are likely to cope with their medication within the community. Increase compliance upon returning to the community.

A proposed benefit of self medication in hospital is that it promote and maintains patient independence and autonomy, in a hope that patients are discharged from hospital with sufficient knowledge to take their medications correctly and safely (highlighted as a problem within the NSF) or medication errors may be reduced.(Vilaususo, 2007)

Enabling patients to be confident enough to take responsibility for and comply to their administrating of medication is a vital step towards sustainable recovery. The healthcare commission also states that effective management of medicines reduces lengths of stay and rates of readmission to hospital by 55 – 60 %. (Star Wards 2, 2008)

Points to be considered:

There may need to be an adaption to the self medication; it may not be practical for patients to have medication in their rooms, the medication may have to be stored in the clinic for patients to attend but nurse to oversee the procedure. I.e. in separate cupboard patients own medication in boxes which they then have to dose independently.

The patient would need to be risk assessed as to their suitability to self medicate

Self medication would need to be individually care planned and reviewed regularly.

[email protected]

Sussex is yet another groovy service. Among their innovations is a fabulous, moving collection of service-user writing. Get your orders in now!

The Hats We Wear/ Blank Versing the Past

An anthology of mental health service user writing from the city of Brighton

The Hats We Wear/ Blank Versing the Past

Writing from the Mill View Hospital and Aldrington Day Hospital creative writing workshops

Available for £12 from: Nick McMaster, Lead Activities Facilitator, Caburn Ward, Mill View Hospital, Hove, BN3 7HZ. Cheques payable to ‘Mill View Creative Writing Workshop’.

Limited stock, please email in advance: [email protected]

“A heart-catching book for poetry lovers and explorers of the mysteries of creativity”
Professor Tudor Rickards