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  • If you need help with your mental health today, we’re here for you

    If you need urgent support today out of hours, you can visit an NHS Recovery Café in Tooting or Wimbledon. If you are anxious, low or stressed, NHS Talking Therapies offers a range of free confidential support.

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    Join our Trust

    We believe that good staff and good patient experience go hand in hand and the people who work with us are at the very heart of delivering an excellent service to our patients.

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  • Better Care: New animation highlights transformed support and access across adult community mental health services 

    As a leading mental health Trust, we have to adapt to make sure we continue to provide high-quality care to communities across South West London. 

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better mental health services

Better mental health services

At the heart of our five year quality and clinical strategies is our ambition to provide the best quality care, treatment and support to the people who use our services.

Our aim is to serve the mental health needs of everyone living and working across the many diverse communities we serve.

Our philosophy is to focus on three key elements; Quality, Improvement and Innovation. This means we will always work hard to make our care safe, effective, patient-centred, timely, efficient and equitable.

Through using this approach we can put the patient at the centre of our work and use recovery approaches to help them fulfil their potential, within and beyond their experience of mental illness and other chronic conditions.

Every year we publish a Quality Account and Annual Report. These important documents set out the work we have done and how we plan to continue making our services the best they can possibly be.

research and development the peer group

Research and Development

There are often opportunities for people to get involved in Research and Development projects.

CRIS oversight committee - Service user opportunity

This is a role description for service users interested in becoming members of the Oversight Committee of the Clinical Record Interactive Search (CRIS) system at SWLStG Mental Health NHS Trust.

What is CRIS?

  • CRIS is a technology development that allows authorised users within an NHS Trust to search an anonymised database of clinical information derived from the electronic clinical record system, which in SWLStG Mental Health NHS Trust is Servelec Healthcare’s ‘RiO’ system.
  • CRIS was initially developed at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust in 2007. Over the past 10 years it has been adopted by a further 15 Mental Health NHS Trusts under the remit of the ‘UK-CRIS programme’, which is run by Oxford University.
  • CRIS works by creating a database of clinical data from the existing clinical record in which the patient identifiable data (PID) is removed.
    • This is done by an automated process that uses each individual’s PID to find and remove PID from within their record, before deleting the PID entirely.
    • Each record is then given a unique ID number and made available for searching, unless that record has been previously marked as unavailable.

What is the Role of the CRIS Oversight Committee?

  • The CRIS Oversight Committee’s role is to control who uses the CRIS system and for what purpose. Nobody can use the CRIS system without prior authorisation from the CRIS Oversight Committee.
  • The Committee can withdraw access to the CRIS system at any time if it is felt that users are not using it as agreed.
  • The CRIS Oversight Committee also makes decisions about the governance structures surrounding CRIS and about information that is communicated with Trust staff and service users.

Who else will be in the CRIS Oversight Committee?

The Committee will include a senior clinician, a representative from the Trust’s IT department, a representative of the Trust’s Data Protection lead (the Caldicott Guardian), 2 service user representatives and an administrator.

pdf Oversight Committee Service User Role Description (161 KB)


The PEER Group

PEER stands for Peer Expertise in Education and Research. 

We are a group of local people with a lived experience of mental health issues who are interested in becoming actively involved in research at St George’s (University of London) and the Trust. 

The group started in March 2010, meets every 2 months and has a current membership of 23 people.  We receive our funding from the SWLSTG Research and Development Committee and PEER members are paid for their involvement.  The group is co-ordinated and facilitated by Sarah Gibson and Kati Turner with support from Steve Gillard, Reader in Social and Community Mental Health at the Population Health Research Institute at St George’s. 

The purpose of our group is to bring together people from different perspectives – mental health lived experience, carers, academic researchers and mental health professionals - to collaborate and work together in the field of mental health research and education in a variety of ways. The group provides the vital lived experience input into research and evaluation projects and funding bids.  PEER Group members receive support and training in various areas to enable them to undertake the work.

If you would like to know more about the work of the PEER Group – whether you are a clinician, academic, mental health professional, carer or someone with lived experience of mental health issues - contact Kati Turner (  

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Guide for students of occupational therapy

Guide for occupational therapy students

"I am delighted to welcome you to our Trust and hope that your practice placement with us will be an experience that will be both enjoyable and provide development and learning opportunities.

Across the Trust, Occupational Therapy staff work in partnership with clients, carers and other professional groups to help people take back control of their lives, and to help them engage in roles, relationships and activities that are important to them.

We are committed to practice placement education and recognise its importance in developing a workforce that meets the needs of modern and developing mental health services.

This online student directory contains information that you will need whilst you are on a practice placement with us.  We hope that you find it useful and that it helps you to get the most out of your placement.

Helen Miles Head of Therapies

Our Trust accepts Occupational Therapy students from the following universities

  1. Brunel University
  2. Oxford Brookes University
  3. Southbank University
  4. St George's University

Consideration is also given to elective students from other Universities and countries, depending on placement availability.


How we learn from complaints

How we learn from complaints

The Patient Experience Team meet every week to discuss all open complaints and when investigations are concluded, the learning from the complaint is considered by the investigator at the time and referenced in the final complaint response

This can mean the investigator requesting that action is taken within a certain time.  The team also meet every month to discuss learning to see if there are any themes arising that the Trust needs to deal with. 

The reporting mechanisms we have in place ensure that learning is disseminated widely. Summaries of responses and actions are reported to the boroughs making sure that actions are taken locally.

We also report themes of learning that have arisen on a quarterly basis to a Serious Incident and Governance Group so that we can monitor concerns.  Complaints are also reported to the Board every month via the Integrated Governance Report and a Complaints Annual Report is considered annually at a Board Committee.

Patient Stories are also reported to the Board every month, complaints and compliments are often the source of these stories and help us to see, from your perspective, what has happened. 

Performance Indicators

When the Patient Experience Team meet each week, we also check to make sure that investigations are going smoothly and are timely to meet the Trust's performance indicator to respond to all complaints in 25 working days in at least 85% of cases. (40 days in complex cases)

We also have a performance indicator to formally acknowledge complaints within three working days in 100% of cases.

Legislation on how complaints are handled

The way NHS complaints are handled is subject to the Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 (the 2009 Regulations) which can be accessed via the Office of Public Sector Information website.

The policy adopts the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman's Principles of the Good Complaints Handling which are:

  • Getting it right
  • Being customer focused
  • Being open and accountable
  • Acting fairly and proportionatel
  • Putting things right
  • Seeking continuous improvement

It also adopts Ombudsman's Principles of Administration and the Principles of Redress. All three Principles can be found on the Ombudsman's website.

Satisfaction survey about our complaints handling

If you have had a complaint dealt with by the our Patient Experience Team we would like to hear from you.

We would like to hear about what we are doing well and what we can learn from. Please complete this survey.


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