An innovative new Mental Health Urgent Care Department has been shortlisted for four national awards.
It is the first of its kind in Essex and provides urgent mental health support for anyone over 18 in mid and south Essex, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The urgent care department has been shortlisted in three categories of The Nursing Times Awards for Critical and Emergency Care Nursing, HRH The Prince of Wales Award for Integrated Approaches to Care, and Nursing in Mental Health.
It is also a finalist in the Royal College of Nursing Awards for the Mental Health Nursing category.
The winners for both awards will be announced later this year.
The service has received positive feedback received from patients, families and carers, and clinicians.
One person who attended the department with someone who was in mental health crisis said: “I took them there and oh wow, I have never ever seen such amazing service.
“Such caring staff and amazing doctors ever. They were just outstanding.”
The urgent care department opened in March this year and was designed with support from people with lived experience of mental health concerns to ensure it provides a safe, calm and therapeutic environment
The department is led by Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (EPUT) and staffed by specialist doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals from EPUT, Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust, and East of England Ambulance Service. They also work with community services and charities.
Staff work with patients to understand what has triggered their mental health crisis and ensure they receive the right care in the right place, whether that’s at home or in hospital.
Since the department opened, we have seen a reduction in people in mental health crisis being admitted to emergency departments at Basildon, Southend and Broomfield hospitals.
We know how important it is for patients experiencing mental health crisis to receive care and support quickly and in an environment that best suits their needs.
We are really pleased with how quickly the Mental Health Urgent Care Department is making a positive difference for patients and their families.
I am very proud of the staff and colleagues we work with for their outstanding work and compassionate care.
The department being shortlisted for four awards is a testament to the efforts of everyone involved in this new service.Dr Milind Karale, Executive Medical Director at EPUT
I am immensely proud to announce that our ground-breaking Mental Health Urgent Care Department has been shortlisted for not one, not two, but four prestigious awards.
This recognition underscores the incredible dedication and tireless efforts of our exceptional team, who have been working diligently to provide compassionate and timely care to individuals in mental health crisis.
Being acknowledged in multiple categories is a testament to our department’s commitment to innovation, excellence, and patient-centred care.
We are thrilled to be among the frontrunners in shaping the future of mental health nursing, and hopefully we can look forward to celebrating a remarkable achievement with our colleagues and partners.Frances Bolger, Interim Chief Nurse, Mid and South Essex Integrated Care Board
Find out more about the Mental Health Urgent Care Department and how people living in mid and south Essex can access urgent mental health care on our Services page.