Wednesday, 23 November 2016
On Monday, South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust (SWLSTG) launched an innovative new unit which will provide enhanced mental health assessments for patients who are experiencing a mental health crisis.
The Lotus Assessment Suite, which was opened by Justine Greening MP on Friday 18 November, is an innovative new unit which will help to improve the overall experience of mental health patients in crisis and help reduce the demand on A&E departments locally.
The unit provides a safe and calming environment for those in crisis away from A&E. This will allow mental health staff to undertake in-depth and informed assessments of more complex patients who are experiencing a mental health crisis.
Referrals to the Lotus Assessment Suite will come from Home Treatment Teams, Liaison Psychiatry services working within local acute hospitals and Mental Health Street Triage teams in partnership with the police and ambulance services.
Chief Executive David Bradley said: “Anyone who has ever been to A&E will understand the incredible care staff provide for urgent genuine life-threatening emergencies. They are busy, high-stimulus environments which do not offer the best atmosphere for patients with mental health problems, particularly when they are in crisis.
“We have looked at other similar services around the country and are using that learning to develop our services and to strengthen our commitment to providing people with the best possible evidenced based care in the least restrictive environments.
“This new unit provides our patients with a safe, calm environment and gives our clinicians the time and space they need to make informed decisions and to agree follow up support.”
The new unit, based on the Springfield University Hospital site, is one of a range of developments designed to improve the Urgent Care Pathway. This unit is one of a range of community initiatives that are helping people to access treatment closer to home.