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New £1million project to help those with serious mental illness into work

The Trust is part of an innovative public and voluntary sector partnership, which has been awarded over £1million in funding from the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Integrated Care System to deliver an exciting new service.

People living in Bassetlaw and South Yorkshire who have severe mental illness and want to stay in or find work will be given more support to do so thanks to the new partnership.

It is led by South Yorkshire Housing Association and includes; Citizen’s Advice Sheffield and all of the region’s mental health services providers, including the Trust, which will be providing support in the Bassetlaw area.

Rates of employment are lower for people with mental illness than for those with any other health condition. Most people with mental health issues would like to work but only 7 per cent of those with severe mental illness are in paid jobs.

The money will be spent on increasing the number of Individual Placement and Support (IPS) employment specialists working within NHS secondary mental health services.

IPS employment specialists offer patients with severe mental illness coaching and advice, along with practical tips on finding a job and preparing for interviews. They search for jobs and approach employers on the patient’s behalf to identify suitable roles - acting as a crucial link between patient, employer and medical staff.

IPS is a proven way of helping people with mental health conditions to find and retain employment. It’s twice as effective as other approaches, with people securing higher earnings and staying in their jobs for longer. It is also associated with reduced use of other NHS services including inpatient admissions.

Patients with severe mental illness wanting help to find work can refer themselves online or speak to their doctor, community mental health team or another mental health professional, to access the scheme. They will be offered work opportunities which suit their strengths, interests, and job preferences.

Julie Swann, Employment Lead AMH said:

“We are delighted to be part of this exciting new partnership and contribute to supporting patients with mental illness to find work, hopefully helping them to maintain good mental health and assist them with their recovery” 

They will be able to call on trained specialists, who are embedded within health teams, at any time. Working alongside psychologists, mental health nurses and other health professionals the IPS employment specialists will be able to speak to potential employers about how best to support patients so that they can work effectively, while staying mentally well.

The service is aiming to help between 500 and 600 patients with severe mental illness over the next two years.

Research has shown stable employment is a major factor in maintaining good health and assists patients in their recovery. Those in work tend to be in better health, visit their GP less and are less likely to need hospital treatment.

You can read more on the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Integrated Care System website.




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