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Street Triage: a mental health advice service


31 January 2018

For immediate release
CNWL SPA now provide 24 hour advice to Metropolitan Police   

Police Officers who encounter a person experiencing an episode of mental ill health can now receive 24 hour advice and support from the CNWL Single Point of Access (SPA) Team.

The new 24 hour triage scheme means that Police officers can call the SPA to receive urgent, around the clock support from a mental health professional. This may include making a referral to the Mental Health Crisis Resolution Team or Rapid Response Team who may attend the scene for further support, assessment and advice.

Joanna Williams, Interim Manager for K&C Acute Home Treatment and Rapid Response Team said; "It's a very good initiative for our mental health service. Working jointly with police officers who believe that an individual has a need for mental health support, can ensure that people get the health care they need as quickly as possible."

Superintendent Mark Lawrence, the MPS Mental Health Lead, said "Mental health places a huge demand on police, with officers attending a mental health call every 12 minutes. The CNWL Single Point of Access advice line provides officers in the Boroughs of Kensington and Chelsea, and Westminster with easy access to professional advice when dealing with a mental health incident. This collaborative approach to policing mental health will enable officers to provide a more informed and effective resolution, and signpost people in mental health crisis to the appropriate service."

Dr John Lowe, who is the CNWL CRHT lead consultant, added; "By reaching across traditional boundaries in a supportive and constructive way, the example of Street Triage shows how closer inter-professional working between Mental Health Services and the police can be of huge benefit to users, staff and services. For example, police officers have described how advice from SPA has allowed them to think of alternatives to section 136. According to our preliminary data from the project, the use of section 136 has already been reduced across Kensington, Chelsea and Westminster which is great news!"

The Single Point of Access Team already take calls from people in a mental health crisis, and organise mental health support such as making an urgent referral or calling a triage team who will head to the scene to intervene in person.
Please find attached a photograph of the triage team. From left to right:  PC Bond, Selena Cox, Manager of the Single Point of Access (SPA), Dr John Lowe, CNWL CRHT lead consultant, Superintendent Mark Lawrence, the MPS Mental Health Lead, Joanna Williams, Manager for K&C Acute Home Treatment and Rapid Response,  Robyn Doran, CWNL Chief Operating Officer, PC Al-Hagassi, PC Adil, Joseph Odior, Senior Practitioner Home Treatment Team, Claire Bowden, Metropolitan Police

We have produced a poster which explains the process in detail, and we have attached this to the release.

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