There are 18 hubs already open and providing mental health support to staff. Confidential services will also contact ‘at-risk’ staff groups proactively to offer quick to access support.
Issues with mental wellbeing contributed to staff absence during the first waves of the pandemic, prompting NHS England to launch wellbeing apps, a new helpline, 24/7 text service and £15 million in funding to address the situation.
The hub model is based on the Greater Manchester Resilience Hub which opened in response to the Manchester 2017 terrorist attack, and has been supporting its local NHS staff.
NHS national mental health director Claire Murdoch said: ‘NHS staff are used to dealing with the extremes of life on a daily basis, but this year has been exceptional, and in what is likely to be the toughest year in their career, staff have put their minds and bodies to the limit treating hundreds of thousands of seriously ill-patients with Covid-19.
‘It is vital that the people that played such a big role getting this country through the pandemic are given additional support, and I would urge anyone working in the NHS whether you are a porter, a nurse, paramedic or other role to please ask for help from one of our 40 mental health support hubs as they open over the coming weeks.’
NHS staff mental health support services currently running include:
A dedicated health and care staff support service via phone and text message.
A specialist bereavement support helpline for those who have sadly lost friends and family from Covid-19 or otherwise.
Liberate, a specialist app for Black, Asian and minority ethnic colleagues to manage anxiety and stress.
Other online resources, guidance, and webinars which include Headspace have been accessed hundreds of thousands of times.