New mental health service for GPs in Greater Manchester and Lancashire

GPA free and confidential NHS service has been launched to offer mental health support to Greater Manchester and Lancashire GPs.

Around 85 per cent of doctors have experienced mental health issues, including stress (75 per cent), anxiety (49 per cent) and low self-esteem (36 per cent), according to the Medical Protection Society.

The new NHS GP Mental Health Service will help GPs and trainee GPs with common and more complex mental illness and substance misuse issues. It will also offer rehabilitation and support to those returning to work after a period of mental ill-health.

Mental health professionals from Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust are working with The Hurley Group to deliver the service which has been commissioned by NHS England, following a commitment made as part of the NHS England General Practice Forward View to support general practice.

Dr Leon Francis, NHS GP Health Service Clinical Lead for Lancashire and Greater Manchester, said: “GPs are at the frontline of the NHS and provide a vital service to members of the public but they are a workforce facing pressure on a daily basis.

“It’s important to recognise that our medical professionals are not immune from their own physical and mental health problems and may need support themselves at some point. We know that GPs are unlikely to access mainstream NHS services when they need that help, due to issues of stigma and confidentiality.

“This new, dedicated service is designed specifically to help overcome this, as a separate service tailored to the needs of GPs.”

Any GP or GP Trainee who is registered on the National Performers List in England can access the service by visiting the website: http://gphealth.nhs.uk/, calling 0300 0303 300 or emailing gp.health@nhs.net

The opening hours are: 8.00 – 20.00 on weekdays (except bank holidays) and 8.00 – 14.00 on Saturdays.