Mental health initiative expands into North Manchester

​Patients at North Manchester General Hospital will benefit from additional mental health support after the expansion of a psychiatric liaison initiative.

The initiative, known as RAID (Rapid Assessment Interface and Discharge), is run by Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust and involves experienced mental health professionals working with hospital colleagues to support people with mental health problems.

Their role is to assess people over the age of 18 years who are in hospital for physical health matters but may also require mental health support. The team ensures those patients receive help quickly, to reduce the risk of problems escalating.

The team also provides any additional practical, emotional and social support required, either first-hand or by signposting people to other services that can meet their needs.

The service, already delivered at several hospitals including The Royal Oldham Hospital, Fairfield General Hospital, Tameside General Hospital and Stepping Hill Hospital, expanded to begin operating at North Manchester General last month thanks to additional funding from North Manchester Clinical Commissioning Group. RAID will work in conjunction with the mental health liaison service already provided by Manchester Mental Health and Social Care Trust.

In the one month since RAID launched at the hospital, the four mental health nurses working across the wards have already helped 80 patients.

Claire Warhurst, Team Manager for RAID at Pennine Care, said: “The RAID service has many benefits – it supports hospital staff to ensure that people can be safely discharged from hospital more quickly, reduces demand on A&E and other hospital services, and improves people’s experience of the NHS and their overall health and wellbeing.

“We’re really pleased the service has been so successful in other areas, allowing us to expand into North Manchester General. The feedback we have received staff and patients on the wards there has been very positive.

“We work closely with our hospital trust partners to find ways to reduce the need for people to be admitted to hospital, or to reduce the amount of time people spend there, and the RAID service is playing a key role in helping us achieve this.”

Steve Taylor, Divisional Director for Medicine and Community Services at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, said: "Both patients and clinical staff in our hospitals are benefiting greatly from the mental health support provided through the psychiatry liaison service.

“Many patients in hospital experience mental health issues and this newly introduced service is helping patients get the support they need promptly. As part of this service, the hospital teams are being educated and trained on how best to assess, treat and care for patients with mental health issues.

“This is a very good example of local health professionals from differing specialities working together to improve services and better meet the needs of patients."