Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust
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Welcome to the November issue of our e-newsletter Southern Health Update - your regular slice of Southern Health news!

This edition of SHU starts with news of Project Fusion - the programme of work to create a new local NHS organisation, following Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care System's review of community, mental health and learning disability services. And there's lots more in this issue of SHU...
  • Discover how £300k of new funding will help local patients with mental health issues stay in, or find, employment
  • Find out more about our new Southern Gambling Service
  • Read about our wonderful Star Awards winners
  • Find out more about a new GP practice which will be joining Southern Health 
  • And much more!
Scroll down for all the details. And for more frequent news, in between the bi-monthly SHU, follow our social media accounts (click the icons below).
Creating a new organisation

In the last issue of SHU, we shared details of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care System’s review of community, mental health and learning disability services. This review recommended that a new organisation be formed - to bring together all NHS community, mental health and learning disability services provided in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight - to improve consistency of care between these services.

Last month, senior leaders from Southern Health, Solent, Isle of Wight NHS Trust and Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust came together for an event focused on this recommendation to create a new organisation. It was the first time that colleagues from all the organisations involved had had the opportunity to get together to start shaping how we work closer together. The event included discussions about clinical models, the principles that people would like to adopt as they work, and how leaders would engage people in their teams.

There was also the opportunity for people to feedback on ideas for the name of the programme of work. Previously, this has been called different things in different organisations, so a new name ‘Project Fusion’ will now be used to avoid confusion and aid consistency (note: this is not the name for the new organisation - that will be decided at a future date, taking people’s views into consideration). 

Outputs from the positively received event last month are now being used to help shape the Strategic Outline Case for the creation of a new organisation. This is due for final approval before the end of the financial year.
Attend our virtual collaboration session this month

Throughout Project Fusion, we will work in partnership with our staff, the people who use our services, their families and our partners. They have the knowledge, experience and expertise to help us determine how a new organisation would best work.

We have begun to have initial conversations with our staff, patient and community groups and with local overview and scrutiny committees and are building a detailed engagement plan. As part of this engagement work, we are inviting interested parties to a wider, virtual collaboration session on Tuesday 22 November, 3.00pm – 5.00pm. The aim of this session is to bring together colleagues from local partner organisations and community groups, to listen and determine how we want to work together going forward. To attend, please register your interest here.
Southern Gambling Service formally launches

Back in March, we announced funding from NHS England to provide a brand-new service providing treatment for people with problematic gambling. The service, based in Southampton, was to be one of just seven such specialist clinics across England…

Fast forward eight months and we are pleased to confirm that our new Southern Gambling Service has now been running since 1 September this year and is set to formally launch at the end of this month with an event in Southampton.

The event at Central Hall on 30 November (9.30am-1pm) will outline what is it like to experience gambling disorder before going on to explain what it is and how the new service can help.

Our new service offers high quality assessment and evidence-based treatments for people with gambling disorder. There are three main treatment pathways - individual psychotherapy, group psychotherapy and medication for problematic gambling.

The service has a strong focus on using digital approaches to deliver high quality care, including asking patients to complete questionnaires via a secure online portal as part of the assessment and treatment process and the use of video-consultations when appropriate.

Email: to find out more about the launch event or visit our website here to find out more about the service and how to access it.

Did you know? It is estimated that around 0.5 per cent of the UK adult population are likely to have some form of gambling addiction.

£300k employment boost for local people receiving mental health support  

italk - which is Hampshire’s largest Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service - is set to receive £300,000 as part of a national funding boost to help those managing mental health issues, find, stay in, or return to work.

italk, provided by our Trust in partnership with Solent Mind, will be one of the first sites to receive the funding which will allow us to employ an additional 10-12 employment advisors.

Employment advisors support people who are experiencing stress or conflict in the workplace to the point it has seriously affected their wellbeing. italk currently employs four employment advisors and, in the past 12 months, they have supported more than 1,200 patients - with more than 800 of those retaining their employment, moving to a more suitable role or returning to work after a period of sick leave.

Studies show that employment improves mental health by providing people with a sense of purpose, improving their self-esteem and helping them to achieve goals.  The additional investment will also allow italk to expand the service to include unemployment support. In light of the current cost of living crisis, this will be a much-needed provision.

Celebrating our Stars

We recently announced the 12 winners of our annual Star Awards, at our first face-to-face staff recognition event in more than two years. The awards were held at the Concorde Club in Eastleigh to recognise NHS teams and individuals who have gone above and beyond in their care for patients.
In total, more than 500 nominations were received from our staff, patients, families and members of the public. A team of judges then had the difficult task of selecting a shortlist of 36 finalists across 12 categories, based around Southern Health’s core values - People and Patients First, Partnership Working and Respect.
The winners ranged from: healthcare support worker Patrick Johnson at Petersfield Hospital (“loved by the patients as he builds up a very special relationship and goes the extra mile for them”); to the Gosport Leg Clinic Team (“their patience and caring over the time it took to heal my leg ulcer went above and beyond just nursing….they always had a smile and kind word for each and every one of us"); to mental health support worker Margaret Foster (“she will drop everything to go out and see a patient who is unwell…she often stays late and puts her patients' wellbeing above her personal plans").
Our Chief Executive, Ron Shields, summed it up perfectly: “Every nomination is a reflection of the compassion, enthusiasm and commitment our staff provide to the people they support every day. I really am honoured to lead an organisation with such caring, talented and innovative people who are committed to delivering the best possible care. It goes without saying that I am immensely proud of each and every one of them!”
Community Diagnostic Centres in the news!
Earlier this month, our staff at Lymington New Forest Hospital enjoyed a visit from BBC South Today to film its Community Diagnostic Centre (CDC) in action.

The CDC (run in partnership with University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust and Solent NHS Trust) helps to provide quicker access to tests, earlier diagnosis and enables patients to be seen closer to home. It is one of a growing number of centres being rolled out by the Government and the filming took place following a national announcement that CDCs have now delivered more than two million vital tests, checks and scans since July 2021. The Government also announced plans for 10 more sites, all part of the ambition to roll out 160 centres across the country by 2025.

CDCs play an important role in combating Covid backlogs, by speeding up access to lifesaving tests - including endoscopies and MRI, CT, X-ray, DEXA and ultrasound scans – plus services such as blood tests or heart rhythm and blood pressure monitoring. They are designed to speed up diagnosis of conditions from cancer to heart or lung disease.
Planned nurses' strike action
You may have seen in recent news reports that nursing staff at the majority of NHS employers across the UK have voted to take strike action. Exact dates of this planned industrial action are yet to be confirmed but could happen before the end of the year.
While nurses’ pay is a matter for Government and the trade unions, we value our staff and understand the importance of good pay and conditions for individuals and their families, as well as the importance of this on wider NHS retention and recruitment. We want to see a resolution as soon as possible to ensure we can continue to focus on delivering the best possible patient care.
Patient safety is always paramount. Unlike workers in many other sectors during a strike, some nursing staff will continue to work. This is carefully negotiated between employers and unions to make sure patients are safe and that emergency services can continue to operate as normal. The NHS has tried and tested plans in place to manage the likely disruption of strike action and we would advise any members of the public that need care during such times to continue to come forward as normal.
A new single point of access for our Learning Disability Service

Southern Health’s learning disability service is set to launch a new ‘single point of access’ early next year. We believe this new system will improve the time it takes for us to respond to people who are referred to our services across Hampshire and Southampton. It will also ensure consistency across our learning disability services.
The new way of working will see all new referrals go to a single point of access team, rather than to the individual community teams as they do now. The new team will be staffed by clinicians on a rotational basis, and they will receive all new referrals and complete assessments by telephone, before passing the referral back to one of our local teams for an agreed outcome.
We will share more details of this in our January issue of SHU, prior to the new system commencing. For more details, email Brian Murtagh (Southern Health’s Head of Learning Disability Services):

Tree planting at Romsey Hospital
Last month, Countess Mountbatten of Burma planted a tree to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee of our late HM Queen Elizabeth.

The tree was planted in the gardens of Romsey Hospital and a really lovely day was enjoyed by all those involved.
Ground-breaking Parkinson's Study
Trust employee, Kayleigh Austin, recently helped as a coordinator on a ground-breaking Parkinson’s study which came about after a woman ‘smelled’ the disease on her husband (pictured). Our Trust recruited around 70 participants to the trial, run by the University of Manchester. Read the full article via the BBC.
GP practice in Basingstoke to move under Trust management

We are pleased to announce that we will be taking on Shakespeare Road Medical Practice in Basingstoke from 1 December 2022. The Practice is currently managed by Operose Health, who have been managing on a caretaking arrangement whilst a more permanent solution could be found. The Trust can now confirm it will be taking the practice on in a similar arrangement to the Willow Group in Gosport, which Southern Health took on in 2017 and is now rated ‘good’ by the CQC.

Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Solent NHS Trust will also be supporting us with the practice to provide the best services to patients. Primary care faces a lot of challenges currently, but we look forward to working with our new colleagues to enable them to continue providing support and care to their local community.

Fun on our wards

It’s been a busy few months on our wards… Juniper Ward had some fun recently, marking Wear It Pink day to raise awareness that men can get breast cancer too. Even some of the patients wanted pink face glitter! Beechwood Ward had two fantastic team building days (for half of their staff each time) which was full of positivity and a real morale boost. Saxon Ward enjoyed a spooktacular Hallowe’en with fun decorations on the ward and Beechwood went even further with a super cake sale and Hallowe’en party for their patients. Plus Austen House celebrated Diwali with an Indian Culture Day - enjoying taster sessions of Indian food, Bollywood dancing and Henna tattoos.
Join us for Leading Live 2022
Later this month, our People Development Team are hosting Leading Live - a festival of leadership and learning. with the theme of 'living the NHS people promise.'  The festival has lots of one-hour sessions that all local NHS staff can sign up for, free! You can take a look at the brochure by clicking here and registering in advance of any of the sessions by clicking on the individual zoom links.
Running for charity
Several of our staff ran this year's London Marathon for charity. Huge congratulations to community staff nurse Natalie King (who ran with her dad and raised £2,950 for Naomi House Children's Hospice), occupational therapist Dave Vogwell from Leigh House (running for mental health charity, Mind) and community physiotherapist Lucy Ison running for Multiple Sclerosis Society in memory of her sister-in-law.

Want to get involved in some charitable endeavours of your own? We promise you don't have to complete an endurance race to get involved (unless you want to)! If you're interested, reach out to our Trust charity: brighterway | Supporting your local NHS.
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Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust provide community health, specialist mental health and learning disability services for people across the south of England. Covering Hampshire, we are one of the largest providers of these types of service in the UK. We employ around 6,500 staff who work from over 200 sites serving a population of around 1.7 million people.
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