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Scilly to have mental health practitioner

The Isles of Scilly is to have a full-time mental health practitioner for the next two years.

Senior Manager for Services to Our Community Aisling Khan announced that following "considerable requests from the community", there will be a senior mental health practitioner working with the local health and care team across a range of mental and emotional wellbeing issues, including dementia.

She told Members at the recent Health & Wellbeing Board meeting: "As you know we’ve tried for some years to get something off the ground and I can’t thank NHS Kernow enough, particularly Tim who came over a few months ago and met with all our teams, and also most importantly service users, and really listened to what they were saying and what the difficulties are. And of course it was common themes - having to fly off for appointments and having no-one to talk to. So we have designed a post which is really quite unique.

"It’s not just about being a CPN (Community Psychiatric Nurse), it’s about someone who is going to do that early intervention and prevention work and minimise fly-offs, as obviously flying off for appointments when you’ve got emotional health difficulties is not great.

"We’re really excited about this project and it’s something we’re thinking could be a kind of case study for other areas.... Someone has been appointed and is providing strategic input into the work we’re doing at the moment and hopefully will be practising [soon]."

She added: "We’re delighted and I particularly wanted to thank the people who shared some very private experiences that helped develop this post."

The new role is part of the Better Care Fund, a programme spanning the NHS and local government which seeks to join-up health and care services.

Aisling is also looking into starting a Befriending scheme after the previous Living Well project ended earlier this year.


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