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Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust

Worcestershire Health and Care Trust News & Publications 2013

News Feed:
Care Support Worker, Helen Stayte, Willows Ward, Evesham Hospital

Hospital staff working to make Christmas Day that little extra special 

While many of us will spend Christmas Day tucking into presents and the turkey, NHS staff up and down the county will continue to work hard to ensure patients get the care they need on the big day. 

Illness and injuries don’t take a break during the festive season and so, unfortunately, some people find themselves in hospital over Christmas – probably not where they would want to be.

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust staff, don’t stop either and they are ensuring they are on hand to make sure patients continue to get the care they need, plus some little festive extras too.

Wards in hospitals will be extending visiting hours on Christmas Day to ensure that people are free to visit when they want to. Patients will have a Christmas dinner and should family or friends want to tuck into a festive feast too they are able to purchase one and sit with their relative/friend.

Presents will also be given out to patients and there have been carol concerts in many of the hospitals during the run up to Christmas to help spread a bit of Christmas cheer.

Two new Non-Executive Directors join the trust board

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust has appointed two new designate non-executive directors.

Non-executive Directors are often referred to as ‘critical friends’ as they aren’t directly involved with the organisation and so can look at decisions and proposals from a more neutral point of view.  Their terms in office are staggered so they don’t all start together and leave together.

Steve Peak who lives in Worcester and Rick Roberts who lives in Kidderminster have both been appointed as designate Non-executive directors.

Whilst they are designate NEDs they will take on the same responsibilities as other non-executive directors, but they will not have voting rights until they become full non-executive directors.

Steve has worked as a manager within the NHS for 24 years which saw him become CEO at Birmingham Women’s Hospital.

During that time he has naturally built up a wealth of knowledge and experience regarding the NHS and has seen many changes in the organisation.

When talking about his new appointment Steve said, “I am very proud to be associated with a trust that provides such critical services to patients and their families. “

Steve has lived in Worcester for 14 years, he has two children and his wife, Penny, is a Paediatric Rheumatologist at Birmingham Children’s Hospital. He is well aware of how health care is delivered within the county and the concerns of those living here.

He went on to say, “I was inspired to become a non-executive director as I wanted to contribute to the development of the health service within my home county.

“I am looking forward to being part of a team that makes a real difference to the lives of the people we serve.”

Rick - full name William Richard Roberts - was born in Cardiff and grew up in South Wales before moving to Kidderminster in 1987 after becoming a consultant in Birmingham.

After qualifying in dental surgery in 1974 he then went onto gain further qualifications and by 1987 he was a Consultant in Oral Surgery at the Birmingham Dental Surgery. Prior to this post Rick worked in both a hospital and a community setting in and around South Wales and the West Country within the NHS and as a university teacher.

During his time in Birmingham Rick held a number of high profile roles and board level responsibilities which included responsibility for quality of clinical care and the performance of a range of clinicians in hospitals and community settings. These roles required him to work closely with Directors and Non-Executive Directors.

When speaking about what he could bring to his new role Rick said, “In terms of benefits to my new role I think my clinical experience has helped me to understand the importance of putting the patient at the centre of everything we do. The managerial experience I have has taught me about the constraints and pressures that exist across the whole healthcare system and I think that those two combined will help me in this role.

“I am looking forward to meeting the staff and the patients – something that I always enjoyed in previous posts – and to working alongside my other colleagues on the board to ensure the delivery of high quality healthcare to the local population goes from strength to strength.”

Chris Burdon, Chairman of Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust said “I have every confidence that Steve and Rick will bring a wealth of experience to the board having held senior positions in other NHS trusts in the region and they have already attended their first board meeting.” 

Help Shape Adult Mental Health Services

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust recently ran a survey to gather views about its Adult Mental Health Inpatient Services. The aim was to understand what matters most to people about this service and a number of people helpfully gave their views on the factors we listed.  

From this, we are now developing a number of options around how the service could be delivered in future.  To help us appraise these options will be holding two events in 2014. The first will be held on Wednesday 5th February at the Charles Hastings Education Centre, Charles Hastings Way, Worcestershire WR5 1DD. The second will be held on Wednesday 12th February at Kidderminster Town Hall, Vicar Street, Kidderminster, Worcestershire DY10 1DB.  Both events will be held in the morning, with refreshments available from 9.30am.

Further details about these events will be circulated nearer the time. In the meantime, if you would like to attend, can we invite you to ‘save the date’. For those who cannot attend either meeting, but who would like to give their views on the options, a further questionnaire will be circulated in mid-December.

More recognition for Bromsgrove mental health unit

Following its recent accreditation from the Royal College of Psychiatrists, a unit supporting people with mental health problems in Bromsgrove has now received a glowing inspection report from the main regulator of health services.

Keith Winter Close, which is part of Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s Adult Mental Health department, is a 12-bed unit along the Stourbridge Road which supports people to recover and rehabilitate from enduring mental health illnesses. The Care Quality Commission, which regulates and monitors the UK’s providers of health and care services, visited at the end of October and have just released their findings in a report sent to the Trust this week.

It described the unit as “bright and welcoming” and said that everyone they spoke to during their visit, including staff and patients, were positive about the services it provides. When asked to give a one line review of the unit, one patient said “it’s great”. The report also said there were good care plans in place for the patients and that their own views were taken into account as part of the care planning process. It added that all patients said they felt safe on the unit.

Mark Dickens, Lead for the Trust’s Adult Mental Health Unit, said: “We are really pleased and proud of the CQC’s report into Keith Winter Close which supports our own view that services provided there are of the highest quality. We have tried to create an environment which helps people recover and rehabilitate to the point where they can go home and regain some control and independence in their lives. The report is a credit to the staff who work there and who provide such great care and support to those who need it.”

Last week Keith Winter Close was formally accredited as ‘excellent’ by the Royal College of Psychiatrists, which is a national standards-based programme which recognises high quality providers.

County’s mental health wards are ‘excellent’

Mental health wards across the county have been described as ‘excellent’ as part of a national standards-based accreditation programme.

Holt Ward, and Cromwell House in Worcester, Harvington Ward in Kidderminster and Keith Winter Close in Bromsgrove have all been recognised as providing a high standard of care and have been accredited as excellent by the Royal College of Psychiatrists, with Hadley Unit in Worcester also being accredited under the scheme.

The inpatient wards provide care and support for those who suffer from more severe mental illness which means they cannot be treated in their homes.

In order to gain this nationally recognised award the units were subject to rigorous inspections with the views of carers and patients being taken into account. A team of ‘peer clinicians’ from the Royal College of Psychiatrists were shown around the sites and presented with health records for inspection.

This latest achievement comes just six weeks after the South Worcestershire home treatment team was also accredited by the same body. The Trust is awaiting further accreditations for North Worcester home treatment team and the Hill Crest mental health unit.

Mental health care in Worcestershire, which is provided by Worcestershire Health and Care Trust, has undergone a series of changes in recent years with a noticeable shift towards home focused care, whilst still providing inpatient wards for those patients for whom it’s appropriate.

Derek Hammond, clinical lead for adult mental health for Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust said, “This confirms that our services are of a high quality. The aim of the changes we have made was to improve patient care and ensure patients get the very best treatment whether that’s at home or in an inpatient unit.

“I am very proud of all our staff for the hard work they have put in. The next challenge is to continue this level of excellence when delivering care to some of our most vulnerable patients.

For more information on the mental health services provided by Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, please visit http://www.hacw.nhs.uk/

Well Connected

'Well Connected' selected as Department of Health pioneer

A Worcestershire programme to transform health and social care for patients in the county has been named a national pioneer by the Department of Health. 

On Friday, Care Minister Norman Lamb announced that the county’s Well Connected programme had been named as one of just 14 ambitious initiatives the Government has selected to “blaze a trail for change” by pioneering new ways of delivering co-ordinated or more joined up care. 

Well Connected aims to ‘join up your health and care’ – helping the people of Worcestershire to ’be well and stay well’, be involved in planning their own care and improve the overall experience and coordination of the services they receive. 

Well Connected was chosen as a pioneer by an internationally renowned panel of experts drawing together global expertise and experience of how good joined up care works in practice. It was launched earlier this year and brings together all the local health and social care providers alongside local commissioners and voluntary groups with the aim of making the often complex health and care system work in a more joined up way for the benefit of patients. Well Connected joins together these groups in one place creating the opportunity to develop plans as a whole system, agree priorities and the best way to tackle the significant  challenges within health and social care.  

The aim of the programme is to provide coordinated care where the needs and priorities of patients, families and carers are at the centre of the planning process, improving the quality and experience of care they receive.  It seeks to facilitate truly transformational and revolutionary changes in the way health and care in the county is resourced, with the emphasis shifting towards personal responsibility, prevention and community based services, empowering people to be supported at home and avoiding issues escalating into crises through earlier intervention. This allows our hospital services the capacity to provide more timely acute care for those who need it and minimize the time patients need to stay in hospital, away from their homes and families.  

Being a pioneer will mean the Well Connected programme will benefit from further Government support and advice which will help it continue to turn its visions into reality. International experts in integrated care will act as critical friends, suggesting areas where more could be done and helping highlight other things which could be introduced. Well Connected already drives a number of projects, for example Virtual Wards which identifies people at particular risk and wraps support around them at home before their conditions deteriorates to a point where more intensive support is needed. Other projects seeks to reduce length of stays in hospital, to better equip people to remain safe at home and to better signpost people to support so they can take more responsibility of theirs and their family’s health. More on these are available on the Well Connected website: www.wellconnectedworcestershire.co.uk

Well Connected in action:

A lady has MS, which means her mobility is severely restricted. She has had several falls at home and in the past has ended up in hospital, sometimes for many weeks at a time. Although she is well cared for by the staff she hates being in hospital; it’s difficult for family to visit her and she can’t wait to get home.

Earlier this month she fell in her living room and badly cut her leg. She has now has a call alarm which she pressed and an ambulance crew were dispatched. In the past she would have been sent off to the hospital, however this time crew got in touch with the local Enhanced Care Team. This is a team run by the local community NHS Trust (Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust) which supports people at home when there’s a crisis. A member of the team visited, assessed her and arranged with colleagues from social care to find a placement in a residential setting. She stayed there for a few nights to recover before returning home.

The benefits were that she avoided a potentially lengthy hospital stay which would have added to the demands in the local acute trust. Instead the professionals were Well Connected with each other and instead of the default acute admission setting they were able to provide her with a more suitable outcome. She said she was unaware that these options even existed, she said in her experience an ambulance arrives and you go to hospital where you stay until your fit enough to return home. She said the stay in the residential setting helped her recover quicker and get home sooner. This example involved the ambulance trust, the community trust and social care working together to improve the experience of the patient and avoid an unnecessary admission to hospital. 

Dr Bernie Gregory, the Clinical Lead for Well Connected said: “We know that there are very many dedicated and experienced  people working in the NHS and in social care with high levels of expertise but  the system in place isn’t always conducive to providing care and support which puts the patient and their priorities at the centre. Often the patient has to find their way round complicated and disjointed services, so they do not end up with the services that fit with them. There are undoubtedly challenges to be overcome but there is a real drive in Worcestershire to transform the way care is provided, and we are delighted that the Well Connected programme has been recognised as a shining example of what might be possible. The people of Worcestershire are going to be at the forefront of groundbreaking developments to improve the care they receive.” 

Peter Pinfield, Chair of Healthwatch Worcestershire, the local patient champion for health and care services, said Well Connected pioneer status was really important to patients and service users across Worcestershire: “This is a tremendous opportunity for health and social care services here in the county to improve the lives for not only patients and carers, but also for ordinary folk who depend upon those very services for a safe and good quality of life every day.  It is a ‘win-win’ for health and care organisations and the public. The professional and organisational barriers will finally have to come down in Worcestershire and we now earned the opportunity to show what can be done in a positive and practical way to improve service delivery". 

Integrating health and care services is national Government policy and the pioneer scheme has been established by the Department of Health to highlight best practice and to inspire other areas to develop similar local initiatives. 

Norman Lamb, Care and Support Minister, said: “Too often care is uncoordinated, leaving too many people needlessly entering the revolving door of their local A&E again and again, because somewhere in the system their care has broken down. We have heard people talk about integration before, but it has never truly taken hold across the NHS.  These pioneers are a starting gun for the NHS and social care to achieve a common goal – to get local health and care services working together, not separately, in the interests of the people that they all serve. However, this is just the start – we want to make integrated care the norm across the country and planning has already begun in order to invest £3.8bn into integrated health and care services in 2015/16. We need to preserve the NHS, and through an integrated approach we can achieve better results for patients and make the money go further, whilst making necessary savings. These fourteen pioneers will test new ways of working for everyone to learn from, and drive forward genuine change for the future.” 

Invite to press briefing:

A press briefing is being organised for early next week (details to be confirmed) to find out more about Well Connected and its role as a national pioneer. Please confirm your interest in advance by contacting Gary Morgan, Head of Communications at Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, on 01905 733632 or via email@ gary.morgan@hacw.nhs.uk 

Notes to Editors:
The Well Connected programme brings together all the local NHS organisations (Worcestershire Acute NHS Trust, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust and the Clinical Commissioning Groups), Worcestershire County Council and key representatives from the voluntary sector. Together we aim to better join up and co-ordinate health and care for people and support them to stay healthy, recover quickly following an illness and ensure that care and treatment is received in the most appropriate place. It is hoped this will lead to a reduction in avoidable hospital admissions and the length of time people who are admitted to hospital need to stay there.
Les Argent & Roger Pritchard, two volunteers for Worcestershire Health and Care Trust
Trust Volunteers Les Argent and Roger Pritchard

Health and care trust says thank you to volunteers 

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust has hosted a number of events throughout October as a way of saying thank you to the 180 volunteers who dedicate their time to helping others. 

Volunteers from across the county attended events held in Tenbury Wells, Bromsgrove, Evesham and Worcester which offered them the opportunity to socialise with each other over a cup of tea and a scone.  

They undertake a wide and varied range of roles within the organisation from those who volunteer as porters to those who provide hair dressing and beautician services and everything in between. Some volunteers simply spend time with patients and provide them with a friendly face and someone to talk to.  

Providing patients with mental and emotional care adds a bit of normality to hospital life which, as one volunteer explained, ‘can often seem so very different to home life’ and can often aid their physical recovery.  

There are many long serving volunteers, some who have been helping for 17 years and most of them have the same reason for doing it – ‘to give something back’.  

In the case of Les Argent volunteering is his way of saying thank you. His life was saved by the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and after moving to Evesham he decided he wanted to volunteer for the local community hospital. Les and his wife have spent most days of the week for the past 11 years volunteering for a whole host of causes. 

The volunteers come from all walks of life. Many are retired from professions such as teaching, hairdressing and nursing, others are younger and still work part-time or full-time in other jobs. 

The events were thought up and organised by Pam Durrant, volunteer co-ordinator for Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust and Rachel Kirkwood, Head of Organisational Development. Pam said, “We are so grateful to all of our volunteers for the help they give us and just wanted to show them our appreciation and to let them know that they are extremely valued by the Trust”.

When speaking about new volunteers Pam said “we welcome people of all ages to come and help out in the county”. For more information about how you can volunteer please visit http://www.hacw.nhs.uk/our-services/volunteering/ or call: 01905 681502.


Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust is reviewing the treatment of a group of patients who have received older adult psychiatry services in Redditch.

The Trust has set up an advice line after a look back exercise which it carried out revealed some concerns about the thoroughness of medical assessments conducted by an Old Age Psychiatrist who has worked in the area since 2006.

The Trust initially became aware of a concern around the assessment and diagnosis of dementia in relation to a patient from Redditch. Having investigated the case the Trust concluded that the process that led to the diagnosis was not thorough enough. The Trust wants to ensure that all patients receive a high quality service so this prompted senior staff to carry out a review of this consultant’s case notes dating back to 2006, which is when they started working for the Trust. This review has raised some doubts about whether a thorough process had been followed for every patient. In most cases the issues were around the review plans for patients who had been diagnosed and were being treated for dementia and other poor mental health.

The consultant concerned is part of a service which provides diagnostic assessment, care and treatment to older people with mental illnesses. They saw people over the age of 65 in the Redditch area to assess and manage their mental health, as well as a very small number of people under 65 who were thought to be suffering from dementia. There are no concerns about other members of the team or other psychiatrists working in the Trust and the consultant did not work for the Early Intervention Dementia Service.

The Trust wants to ensure that all of its patients receive the highest standard of assessment and treatment and will be taking steps to ensure this is the case in Redditch. GPs in the area have been contacted where there are simple checks needed about a patient’s medication and also asked if they feel it would be helpful for their patients to be reviewed by a specialist. A small number of former patients have been contacted directly and all those who are still under the care of the team have had their care reassessed by a different doctor.

Any former patient of the consultant in Redditch can access a review of their care if they would like to. A special advice number has been set up by the Trust for anyone who has queries or concerns. The advice number is 01905 681484 and is available from 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday. Alternatively people can email AdviceLine@hacw.nhs.uk and, where appropriate, arrangements will be made for a consultant to call back to discuss any questions or concerns.

Dr Bernie Coope, Associate Medical Director at Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust and who is leading on the review, said: “This is about providing anyone who has accessed old age psychiatry services in Redditch with the reassurance that their care and treatment is suitable. We would urge anyone who has concerns or would like to discuss their situation with a professional to contact the advice line.”

Seal of approval for county’s mental health teams

Services which support people across Worcestershire who have mental health problems have been given a seal of approval by a national accreditation scheme.

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s Mental Health Crisis Assessment Team and the Home Treatment Teams covering Wychavon, Malvern and Worcester have just found out they have been recognised by The Royal College of Psychiatry’s accreditation programme. The programme provides quality assurance for service users, carers, commissioners, regulators and staff. It is only awarded to services that that have undergone a rigorous programme of assessments to ensure they are of high quality.

The two services work with people who become acutely unwell with mental health problems.  The Crisis Assessment Team responds to urgent referrals for assessment within four hours and provides short term crisis support across the county. The Home Treatment teams provide care for people who would otherwise need to be admitted to psychiatric hospital or to help the person be discharged from hospital early.

Whilst psychiatric hospital admission is needed by some patients, the Trust aims to support a person and their family at home if safe and appropriate; this helps the patient keep up their usual routines and avoids the upheaval of hospital admission. It is well recognised that care closer to home help people recover more quickly and successfully.

The process of accreditation for the Home Treatment teams started last year.  The teams covering Redditch, Bromsgrove and Wyre Forest are hot on their heels having started the process in May this year.

As part of the accreditation process the teams evidenced excellent feedback from service users, that they had robust processes in place and that services achieved quality outcomes for patients and families.

Derek Hammond, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s Clinical Lead for Adult Mental Health, said: “This accreditation is the equivalent of a Kite Mark or a gold standard and is only awarded to those which deliver the highest quality services. It should provide service users, families, carers and the general public reassurance and confidence that if they or a loved one require the service of the Crisis Assessment or Home Treatment team then they will get the very best care and support possible.”

For more information contact Gary Morgan, Head of Marketing & Communications at Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, on 01905 760020 or via Email:gary.morgan@hacw.nhs.uk

CAMHS service celebrates a year of achievement

Major improvements to Worcestershire’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) have been made, a year after the service was re-designed. 

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s CAMHS team has just celebrated a year since a re-design with reduced waiting times for service-users being one of the most notable improvements. The average wait for a first appointment is now just five weeks compared to 18 weeks prior to the re-design.  

Fran Tummey, CAMHS Clinical Manager for Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, said: “Staff across CAMHS have worked hard to make the much needed changes to the service and we now believe we offer a more focussed mental health service with the changes made based on user feedback. We will not rest on our laurels and will continue to improve the experience our children and young people and families receive when they are referred.”   

As well as reducing waiting times for the children and adolescents, results from a recent survey have shown that the majority of service-users feel a positive impact on their mental health after seeing staff. The survey results showed that 78 per cent of Worcestershire children and young people who access CAMHS reported their difficulties were ‘much better’ or ‘a bit better’ after receiving a service.  

Richard Keble, Head of Commissioning for Worcestershire County Council, who fund and monitor the service, said: "Commissioners have monitored the progress of the re-design and the performance of the service throughout this period and there is clear evidence that outcomes have improved with effective tools and processes in place.  Commissioners will continue to work with the Trust to ensure that improvements are sustained and enhanced in the interests of children and young people and their families." 

The Trust and Commissioners meet monthly to monitor the performance of the service and identify areas for improvement. At present the service plans to improve partnership working with educational psychologists and offering consultation and training sessions to school staff.  

As well as this, the service is planning to improve support for referrers when their referral does not meet CAMHS criteria by firming up links with the Early Help Hub. These plans will then enhance the appropriate advice that families receive.  

For further information please contact: 

Gary Morgan, Marketing and Communications Manager, on: 01905 760020 or Email: gary.morgan@hacw.nhs.uk

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust Infection Prevention and Control Team
WHCT Infection Prevention and Control Team - (Left to Right) Gail Preece, Becky Davies, Carole Clive, Karen Hall and Siân Edwards.
Nurse in line for national health award

A nurse at Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust who leads on work to prevent incidences of infection among patients and service users has been shortlisted for a prestigious national health award 

Carole Clive, Nurse Consultant for Infection Prevention & Control, is one of ten shortlisted nationally for the Clinical Leader of the Year Award, which is one of the categories in this year’s Health Service Journal (HSJ) Awards.  

Over 1000 entries were received for awards and Carole said she was both shocked and delighted to have been initially nominated and then shortlisted. She also paid tribute to her team saying: “it is testament to the work that the team undertake across the Trust and county to ensure high standards of infection prevention and control and me being shortlisted is recognition of everyone’s efforts and achievements.”  

Carole also paid tribute to clinical and support staff throughout the Trust for the part they play in ensuring good practice and providing clean, safe care.

Carole will now attend an interview in front of the HSJ panel in London in October, before attending a glitzy ceremony in November where she will find out whether she’s the winner of the accolade.

Sandra Brennan, Director of Quality & Director of Infection Prevention & Control at the Health and Care Trust, added: “It is typical of Carole to be modest about her achievements. She is highly regarded by staff across the Trust.  She and her team have a high profile and are passionate about ensuring and maintaining very high standards in infection prevention and control.”

The HSJ Awards are the most prestigious and coveted awards in UK health, bringing together the best of the sector for a glittering evening of recognition, celebration and networking. With 22 categories the awards champion best practice and innovation to overcome the challenges which face the health sector today.

Alastair McLellan, Editor-in-Chief, HSJ, said: “I am delighted to announce the shortlist for the HSJ Awards 2013. Being shortlisted means that you or your organisation has been specifically chosen as a leader in innovation and best practice. We received a record number of entries for this, our 32nd year of the awards - a reflection of the pride health services and organisations have in their vital work.” 

For more information contact Gary Morgan, Head of Marketing & Communications, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust – gary.morgan@hacw.nhs.uk, 01906 733632

Wednesday, July 31 2013

Trust’s Mental Health employment scheme bucks trend

More people who have mental health issues are finding jobs through Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s employment programme, bucking the results of a national review.

Research carried out by the King’s College London released this week suggested that the recession was having a profound impact on people with mental health problems. Between 2006 and 2010, the rate of unemployment for those with mental health problems rose twice as much as for other people - from 12.7% to 18.2%. Men and those with low levels of education were particularly affected, the study said.

However in Worcestershire the Health and Care Trust’s mental health employment team are bucking this trend and have reported major success in finding employment opportunities for its service users over the last 12 months. The number of paid jobs entered by service users has increased to 84, a 60% increase from 2011/12. This has contributed to the Trust’s Individual Placement and Support service, which is responsible for supporting service users gain work experience and ultimately get paid jobs, being accredited as a national centre of excellence.

Jobs people have been found ranged from catering and laundry work, to care work, teaching and engineering with aerospace.

Pete Jordan, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s Service Manager for the Mental Health Employment and Reablement Service, said: “Many of our people have previously held down good jobs before experiencing mental health difficulties. What we do now is to have an employment worker based in each of our mental health teams. They work alongside the clinical staff to help rebuild people’s confidence and target potential employers.The key issue is whether people want to work. If they want to work it our job to give them hope and make this happen”.

26 July 2013 - CAMHS service celebrates a year of achievement

Major improvements to Worcestershire’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) have been made, a year after the service was re-designed.

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s CAMHS team has just celebrated a year since a re-design with reduced waiting times for service-users being one of the most notable improvements. The average wait for a first appointment is now just five weeks compared to 18 weeks prior to the re-design.

Click here for the full story.

young people

Trust in search for non-executive directors

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, the main provider of community and mental health care for Worcestershire is searching for two Designate Non-executive Directors to add to its board.

The Trust is urging any professionals with senior level experience in the private, public or voluntary sectors who would like to make a real difference to local healthcare services to apply for one of the two positions.  

Chris Burdon, Trust Chairman, said;

 “This is an exceptional opportunity to share your talents and expertise to make a positive difference to the lives of people in Worcestershire.”

Candidates should have a genuine enthusiasm for improving patient-centred care and have gained significant senior experience in either the medical, nursing, allied disciplines or social care fields, or financial and or commercial experience gained at a senior level in a large and complex organisation.

The individuals who are appointed will attend Board meetings and participate in a consultant capacity, advising the Board but not able to vote. In due course they will become full Board members.

For an informal and confidential discussion with the Chair of the Trust, Chris Burdon, regarding the role please contact his PA, Rachel Godby, on 01905 733674 prior to the closing date of 11am 30 August 2013. The application pack can be found at: www.ntda.nhs.uk/2013/06/26/worcshcnhst-ned/

Trust statement on Healthcare Assistants following a national report

A spokesperson for Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust said: “Healthcare assistants who join the Trust must complete a workplace training programme, which takes place in the setting where they are assigned to work. This could be a hospital, care home, a community setting or shadowing senior staff on home visits. It helps them get used to their environment and their colleagues and provides them with hands on, practical training which will equip them with the skills necessary. These sorts of experiences are impossible to re-create or engineer in a classroom or via a DVD and we really believe the hands-on experiences workplace training provides is invaluable. This is in addition to the mandatory training that all new Trust employees must undertake, which includes programmes on infection control, health and safety and equality and diversity.

We do currently have in place a training programme for healthcare assistants which test their competencies in specific skills but we welcome this report and will be examining its recommendations to see if there are further improvements to be made. We expect all our staff to have the skills and experiences to provide the high quality, safe and compassionate care which we pride ourselves on.”

New mental health service launches for acute hospitals

A new service has just been launched to help patients who are experiencing mental health difficulties in the acute hospitals at Worcester and Redditch.

The Acute Hospitals Mental Health Service, provided by Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, was launched in conjunction with mental health awareness week in May. The specialist team, which is made up of health professionals trained in treating people with mental health difficulties will help improve the care of people who present to the emergency department or hospital ward with unmet mental health needs.

Click here to read the full release

Annual Report 2012/13 - out now!

We have followed the same format as last year in combining the Quality Account and Financial Account into one main Annual Report document. The Quality Account starts by looking back over the last 12months to report on our progress at achieving last year’s targets around the quality and safety of what we do. So this includes performance around things like hospital infections, pressure ulcers and on the numbers of trips and falls people have in our care. The Quality Account shows that in general we have performed really well against all our quality and safety indicators and this has been recognised by some of our external stakeholders, including the County Council’s Health, Overview and Scrutiny Committee (HOSC), the new local Healthwatch and our Clinical Commissioning Groups. It’s also been backed up over the year with a host of external regulators and inspectors praising the quality and effectiveness of our services. 

The Quality Account also highlights our upcoming priorities and our plans for meeting targets and we will be using various channels to update you on progress.

The Financial Account highlights what we spent and how we spent it over the last year. Ensuring we are financially viable and that we have sustainable plans is a key part of our FT bid and the account evidences that as a Trust we are in a healthy financial position.

Click here to download the Annual Report and Quality Accounts 2012/13

Chance to look around county’s new mental health unit

New Haven exterior

Residents are being invited to have a look around the county’s brand new older adult mental health unit next week which is preparing to open on the site of the Princess of Wales Community Hospital in Bromsgrove

The New Haven unit will support older people who have mental illnesses such as a dementia and functional illness such as depression when they are too ill to be cared for at home. The 30-bed unit is unique with an outdoor home from home design which will change peoples’ perceptions of what a mental health unit is all about.

Read the full press release here. 

28 June 2013

Trust's secure suite improving mental health care for county

                               tv room secure 136 suite

Recent figures show Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s place of safety suite is helping to lower the number of patients being detained in police custody.

The figures are collected when someone is detained under section 136 of the Mental Health Act 1983. This is for the person’s own protection and so they can be medically assessed. When a person is detained they have to be taken to a place of safety which could be a specialised secure suite, a hospital or a police cell. 

Click here to read the full release

19 June 2013

Physical restraint figures - Trust response

Following the release of the natoinal physical restraint figures from the charity MIND, which can be viewed here, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust provided this statement for the public and media:

Derek Hammond, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust’s Clinical Lead for Adult Mental Health, said: “We recognise that any incident that requires clinical staff to physically intervene to restrict the movement of individual patients can be extremely upsetting to the patient, their families and their carers. It’s also important that our staff have good relationships with patients based around mutual trust and respect and believe that physical intervention or restraining can have a negative impact on this. We therefore ensure this level of intervention is used only as a last resort; instead our preferred method is to talk to people to calm them down and our staff are well trained and equipped with techniques to do this.”

3rd June 2013

Trust Outlines Francis Action Plan

The Francis report was the topic of discussion at a special patient forum event organised by Worcestershire Health and Care Trust’s Engagement Team and led by senior staff, including Director of Nursing Sandra Brennan.

Over 50 people attended the event at the Perdiswell Young People’s club, including Trust members and representatives from its Locality Forums. The aim was to provide reassurance to the group that as a Trust we were taking action to ensure our high standards are maintained. This is in light of the publication earlier this year of the Francis report following the poor standards of care at the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust. The group were also made aware of the Trust’s Francis Action Plan which has already included briefings for staff and the public, and they were given an opportunity to provide feedback and make suggestions.

To view the event’s presentation click here

21 May 2013 - Co-sleeping project set for county-wide roll-out

A new project set up to inform parents of the risks of co-sleeping with their new-born babies is set to be rolled out across Worcestershire.

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust and Worcestershire Acute NHS Trust have recently launched a new Safer Sleeping Risk Assessment. It has been successfully piloted in Redditch and involves midwives and health visitors working with parents to better review where baby sleeps and discuss specific questions about known risk factors for cot death and how these can be reduced.

Following the pilot in Redditch, the Trusts will be rolling out a similar programme in Worcester and Malvern in July, with the aim of it being in place county-wide by the start of 2014.

Helen Edwards, Clinical Services Manager for the Health and Care Trust’s Children, Young People and Families Department, said: “We know that there are known risk factors which can cause serious harm to new born babies; these include smoking, drug and alcohol consumption and bed sharing. There are still over 300 cases of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) each year in the UK and we recognise that more advice and information is needed to alert new parents of the risks associated with co-sleeping.”

The risk assessment tool is a questionnaire undertaken at home by Midwives and Health Visitors in partnership with parents both before and after a baby’s birth. It is designed to highlight awareness of possible risk factors e.g. observing where a baby sleeps both at night and in the day, bed sharing, smoking and medication. As well as informing of the dangers of co-sleeping, it is another opportunity to share information with parents about sleeping positions of babies, room temperature, use of suitable bedding, avoidance of sleeping on sofa’s and in car seats, discussion around use of dummies and what to do if your baby is unwell.

For more information on the assessment contact Katharine Leach, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, at Katherine.Leach1@hacw.nhs.uk, or on 01905 681525

17 May 2013 - Plans in place to relieve pressure on county’s acute and A&E services

Worcestershire’s health and care chiefs are working together to alleviate pressure on the county’s acute and emergency services.

In light of national reports questioning the long-term sustainability of accident and emergency services due to demand and pressure in that part of the system, all the local health and care organisations want to reassure patients and residents that plans are in place to reduce pressure on these services in Worcestershire.

The Well Connected programme for example is a coming together of chief executives and leads from all the local NHS organisations (Acute Trust, Health and Care Trust and Clinical Commissioning Groups), Worcestershire County Council and key representatives from the voluntary sector. Together we aim to better join up and co-ordinate health and care for people and support them to stay healthy, recover quickly following an illness and ensure that care and treatment is received in the most appropriate place. It is hoped this will lead to a reduction in avoidable hospital admissions and the length of time people who are admitted to hospital need to stay there.

a and e
Part of this approach is to develop alternative services in the community allowing people to remain at home, or close to home, perhaps with the aid of new technology and receive an equivalent or better experience to what they would have had in a hospital. This will reduce demand on acute and A&E services, leaving them with the capacity to care for and treat those people who need the specialist level of support they are equipped to provide.

This approach supports the Urgent Care programme, which is also led by senior staff from across the local health and care system, and has been set up in response to levels of demand within the county’s three acute hospitals; the Worcestershire Royal, Alexandra and Kidderminster Hospitals. It aims to develop urgent care services that ensure patients and the public have access to convenient, high quality, timely and cost effective urgent and emergency care services .The aim is for patients to be seen by the right health and/or social care professional, in the right setting and at the right time.  The GPs working with paramedics in an ambulance, for example, aims to cut avoidable conveyance and admissions to hospital and instead provide appropriate care for patients in their own home.

Bernie Gregory, Medical Lead for the Well Connected Programme, said: “Our organisations recognise that we need to work together to alleviate pressure in parts of the system that face the biggest demand while continuing to put patients first and ensuring people get the care they need in the right place for them. For too long the default setting for people when they are ill and for professionals assessing them has been hospital, and we know that sometimes people arrive at A&E or are admitted to hospital when other options may be more suitable. The Well Connected and Urgent Care programmes take a system wide view to the needs of local people andhave the commitment from all our organisations which makes us confident that we can improve patient care and reduce strain on the parts of the system which we know are at full capacity.”

16 May 2013 - Got a fracture? Wait for fraction of time at MIU

Residents of Worcestershire are being reminded to use the Minor Injury Unit (MIU) at their local Community Hospital.  

Recent data provided by Worcestershire Health and Care Trust, who run the community hospitals and Minor Injury Units, show how the average waiting time to be treated by a professional is just 14 minutes (at Bromsgrove’s Princess of Wales). The Trust, along with other organisations in the county are urging people to use their local MIU to ease strain on the accident and emergency departments at Worcester, Redditch and Kidderminster.

Matt Stringer, Head of Community Care Services for Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, said:

“It’s really important that you get the care and treatment you need in the most appropriate place, which for sprains, fractures and minor burns, is in your local Minor Injury Unit. Some residents may be put off the drive to their nearest community hospital but that could still be a lot quicker than waiting at the Worcestershire Royal, Alexandra of Kidderminster hospitals.”

Waiting times at the minor injury units have gradually been getting lower and lower over the last year and now the average time for someone to be discharged after being treated is just 42 minutes. The units can treat back injuries, bites or stings, wounds and minor head injuries.

  • Bromsgrove MIU, Princess of Wales Community Hospital: 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday and 12pm to 8pm at weekends

  • Evesham MIU, Evesham Community Hospital: 8am to 11pm, seven days a week

  • Malvern MIU, Malvern Community Hospital: 9am to 9pm, seven days a week


For more information on your nearest community hospital please visit: http://www.hacw.nhs.uk/our-services/community-hospitals/

13 May 2013 - Public supports vision for more care at, or closer to, home

The vast majority of those who attended recent engagement events held by the county’s main provider of community and mental health NHS services are in support of its strategy to care for more people in or closer to home.

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust have just completed a round of hour-long events across the county which together attracted around 100 people. The sessions were a chance for attendees to hear more about the Trust’s plans for the future. In particular the Trust is aiming to reconfigure some of its services so they can care and treat more people in or closer to the place where they live. This will in turn reduce avoidable admissions to acute hospitals and ease some of the strain on those services.

Trust managers also outlined their vision for the future of the county’s five community hospitals. They want them to be used more effectively, which will mean the sites in Pershore, the Princess of Wales in Bromsgrove, Malvern, Tenbury and Evesham are equipped and designed to provide a greater variety of day treatments and other activities e.g. IV therapies and blood transfusions as well as the inpatient services they currently offer. The new treatments wouldn’t require people to stay in the hospitals overnight or be admitted to in-patient wards, and so this, combined with the vision to care for more people in or closer to home, could lead to community hospitals running with fewer beds but more variety of treatments than currently provided in the longer term.

Discussions with commissioners about the exact future configuration are still on-going and no decisions have been taken but results of a questionnaire handed out at the events shows support for the Trust’s direction of travel. It asked whether people supported the vision for more care in or closer to home, and whether they remained supportive if that had the potential for leading to fewer beds. Just over 90% of those who completed the questionnaire said they were in favour of care in or closer to home, with 60% in support if that led to a bed reduction. 

at home care
at home care 2
at home care
at home care

Jim Bulman, who attended one of the events and who also chairs one of the Trust’s patient forums, said: "I find the attitude of the Trust towards the treatment of people in their own homes very reassuring. It has been well thought through. People will be much happier about this when they realize that they will be treated at the very nearest location to their homes so it is simpler for family and friends to visit them."

Shan Moule, Chair of Princess of Wales League of Friends group, added: "These are indeed exciting times for health care in Bromsgrove. Patients will be able to return home and or be treated in their homes which we understand has so many benefits. We are extremely proud of our flagship hospital and think this can only have a positive effect on healthcare across the county."

Sarah Dugan, Chief Executive of Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, said "the engagement events were an opportunity for the Trust to talk to members and the general public about the future of services and how they could change in response to meet patients and service users’ aspirations, and the financial challenge being faced: She added: “The events were part of our ongoing discussions with local people about how we might change and the response across all the events for our future direction and strategy was really supportive. As a healthcare economy we know that a lot of people go to hospital even when this may not be best place for them to receive treatment and care. We have been and continue to develop our community-based services and feel that where safe and appropriate people would prefer to receive care and treatment in or closer to home and certainly that is backed up by the response from the engagement events. We also want to reinforce how important our community hospitals are to us as a Trust and what we have suggested will, we believe, enhance the role they play."

9 May 2013 - Stroke patients 'very satisfied' with aftercare

The majority of stroke patients in the county said they were very satisfied with the advice and support provided to them after leaving hospital.

The Community Stroke Service (CSS), provided by Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust has just had the results back from a county-wide questionnaire, completed by all patients who were seen on one or more occasion.

Click here for more information. 

Community Stroke Service

26 April 2013

Bringing health and care to you – How does care at home work? 

Bringing health and care to you – How does care at home work?
In March Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, which is the county’s main provider of community and mental health services, outlined its vision for the future. It has to evolve due in part to a local ageing population but also so that it continues to meet the aspirations and expectations of the people and communities it serves.

A key element of the strategy is to care and treat more people at home, which will reduce avoidable admissions to hospital. This includes caring for more people in the community, in the place where they live.

Click here for more information.

16 April 2013

Chance to hear more about Trust’s plans for the future

The NHS Trust which provides community and mental health services for Worcestershire is inviting residents to a series of events outlining how it plans to meet future challenges and expectations.

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, the main provider of mental health services and which runs the five community hospitals across the county, is holding ‘Planning for the Future’ events, starting next week, to providing residents with more information about its vision and direction of travel.

Managers at the Trust will talk about the emphasis on providing care in or closer to home and broadening the range of services and treatments available from local community hospitals. The Trust is also focused on helping people to stay healthy, supporting patient’s to recover following illness, and working in a more integrated and joined up way with partners.

The hour-long events will include a short presentation followed by a question and answer session when the audience can pose queries to members of the Trust’s management team. Health Trainers, who provide quick health MOTs, for example checking blood pressure, will be at each event.

Sarah Dugan, Chief Executive of Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, said: “What we will be talking about is our high level vision for how some of our services may look in the future. We feel it is right that we share this now to begin to get more feedback from people who have used our services, or who may access them in the future. We certainly feel that caring for more people in or closer to home and enhancing the kinds of services available in community hospitals is the right thing to do, but it’s critical that we hear from our communities to find out more about what they think.”

Event details:


Monday, April 15th  6pm until 7pm 
Training and Development Centre, Evesham Community Hospital, Evesham

Wednesday, April 17th 6.30pm until 7.30pm

Kidderminster Health Library, Kidderminster Hospital

Thursday, April 18th  6.30pm until 7.30pm

The Hive Library and History Centre, Studio



Wednesday May 1st  6pm until 7pm
Conference Room, Princess of Wales Community Hospital

Wednesday April 24th  6.30pm until 7.30pm

Malvern Library

Tuesday April 23rd  5.45pm until 6.45pm

Redditch Library

Places must be reserved in advance by contacting the Trust on 01905 681425 or email FTOffice@hacw.nhs.uk

Friday 12 April 2013

New leg clinic up and running at Upton Surgery

A brand new clinic specialising in preventing leg ulcers has just been launched at Upton Surgery.


Tissue viability

upton surgery leg clinic

Wednesday 20 March 2013

Get minor injuries treated at the right place

Worcestershire residents are being urged to get theirscrapes, sprains and broken bones treated in the right place to help relieve the pressure on other parts of the health system.

get minor injuries treated at the right place

Thursday 14 March 2013

Trust planning for the future

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust outlined its plans for caring and treating more people in or as close to home as possible at its Board meeting this week (March 13).

planning for future

Friday 8 March 2013

'Topping out' at soon-to-be completed Mental Health Unit

Chief Executive, Sarah Dugan, said she believed the new and soon-to-be completed older adult mental health unit in Bromsgrove will signify a key step change in how people with conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s are cared for and treated in Worcestershire.

Wednesday 6 March 2013

County's healthcare staff highly motivated

New figures released last week show that staff at Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust are one of the most motivated groups of NHS workers in the country.

Staff survey results nurse image

Tuesday 26 February 2013

Recovery College continuing to support patients

The Worcestershire Recovery College that has just been completed in Worcester has been hailed a success by organisers and participants.

The Big Recovery

Recovery college

Friday 15 February 2013

The role of community services supporting people with dementia

With mental health illness on the increase, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust is developing a strategy to reduce, not increase, the number of beds.

Early intervention in dementia service

Older Adult Community Mental health teams

Community services and dementia care in home

Tuesday 12 February 2013

Young people help shape how service is run

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust has improved the county’s child and adolescent mental health service, also known as CAMHS, by engaging its own service users. The service, which treats youngsters with mental health illnesses like bipolar, Aspergers and schizophrenia, has involved its own users to shape how young people are treated.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service Website

Rory Barnes - CAMHS

Wednesday 16 January 2013

Vision for state of the art mental health suite in Bromsgrove turning into reality

A new state of the art specialist mental health unit in Bromsgrove which could radically change the way patients receive care and support is edging nearer completion.

new Brook Haven image

Tuesday 8 January 2013

Start the new year with a free health check

Worcestershire residents are being offered the chance to start the New Year with a free health MOT.

Health Trainer Service Website

health trainers press release