Mental health services are needed now more than ever and in new ways that work for the community. The whole population’s mental health has suffered due to COVID-19 and therefore mental health care provision is only becoming more important. The NHS Long Term Plan and new Integrated Care Systems are prioritising community-based, preventative and holistic mental health care and therefore we need feedback from service users and carers to ensure these services meet their needs.
This report draws on user feedback to identify areas of unmet need in community adult mental health services and makes recommendations on how to address them. Our research involved conducting a survey co-produced with the Healthwatch Southwark Mental Health Working Group, a small working group of local residents with experiences of mental health services. The survey was undertaken between 7th July-31st August 2021 and asked about people’s experiences of a range of South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) services within the key themes of access, waiting, suitability, impact, and staff.
Based on our findings, we made recommendations to SLaM to drive improvements and they provided a formal response, outlining the developments already happening within the Trust to address the recommendations and future plans towards their improvement programme.