Throughout March, 10 staff-listening events we held across our Trust, in which over 200 staff shared their views about their experience of working here and the experience we provide to the communities we serve.
The commitment and compassion of everyone was impressive. All staff want to do a great job and feel proud of the quality of care we provide. We agreed that staff need time to develop meaningful relationships with service users and carers to support people to improve their lives.
Together, we also agreed some changes that we are going to make this year and agreed that we need real clarity about our future direction. With a shared understanding of where we’re all going, we’ll be more likely to pull in the same direction and consistently deliver the highest quality services that everyone wants.
We must create this future direction together with service users, carers, Trust members and other stakeholders. Specifically, we need to:
re-imagine what the future of our Trust might look like – what impact could we have together if everything we did was outstanding;
agree the expectations we should have for ourselves and each other; and
develop a shared plan for the next five years.
I recognise that we’ve not listened as well as we could have done in the past. That’s why we’re going to do it differently this time.
From 20 April, you are invited to an online conversation where we will ask you to re-imagine the future of our Trust. Together, we will agree the difference we want to make to the communities we serve.
Towards the end of May, we will invite you to another online conversation to support us with our plans and by July, we will have built in partnership a new vision for our Trust and agreed our values and our plan for the next five years. Your voice counts in our journey.
Please visit www.YourVoiceCounts.org.uk to get involved.
Here, Elaine Wilkes, Carers Education Worker writes about a new group to support people in Leeds:
I am really excited this morning along with my colleague Lokhi Roy! We both work as part of Leeds Carers and stated a new group last night based on Mental Health Recovery!
The group runs at Vale Circles once every two weeks from 5.30pm-7pm. It is based on a group that has been running at Lovell Park for five years. Click here for the dates and venue details.
So why the excitement? Well I experience depression and this is a group where anyone can come along if they have an interest in mental recovery. This is:
- People who have mental health problems
- Anyone who is a combination of all the above
The group focuses on:
- Hope that recovery can happen
- Looking at things in a positive way
- Knowing we experience negative things but looking at the type of things we do to overcome these
My dad died last March and I went to the Lovell Park group the week after his funeral. I was ok but still at times tearful. A member of the group mentioned railways (which my Dad loved) and I could feel myself becoming tearful. I did not feel the need to hide the tears but talked about being upset by his death. This led to other people talking about how they had overcome difficult things including deaths of people close to them. I went away from that group feeling supported and more positive. We also talked about techniques that can help all us cope at tough times
My hope for the Vale Circles Recovery Group is that we can develop a safe place where anyone feels comfortable to talk about things that are emotional and hard. For me the key thing is we don’t stop there but focus on hope, how we can overcome pain and techniques to help all us of do this.
I don’t think it matters whether someone is a service user, carer or worker or all of these. What matters to me is that we are people and we all have things that are hard. This group is about overcoming these things but also have fun and humour along the way.
If you would like further information about these sessions or to book yourself a place please contact 0113 85 54445 and ask for Elaine Wilkes or Lokhi Roy.
Last week I was fortunate enough receive training delivered as part of the EQUIP trial – EQUIP stands for Enhancing the Quality of User Involved Care Planning in Mental Health Services, you can read more about it here. Anyway, I was a bit of a cuckoo in the community teams’ nest and I have to say they were very welcoming (I know it can be disconcerting to have a non-team member present at a team event!).
Having been involved in bringing the trial to the attention of Leeds and York Partnerships NHS Foundation Trust (LYPFT) I was curious as to what the training content would be – and anxious that it was on similar lines to the existing training provided within the LYPFT. I don’t want to blog the entirety of the training but I am happy to share some key reflections:
- Training was delivered by Lauren, Lindsey and Karina – experts by experience of using services, being a carer and an academic. This worked very well and brought the theoretical points to life, making the learning ‘real’; so helpful in understanding the impact that professionals way of being, interventions and ‘rules’ have on people.
- Role play can work – the trainers pushed some difficult conversations that served to highlight some of the stickier areas that we work within – confidentiality, information sharing, truth-telling versus saying a lot of words but saying nothing.
- People can’t be involved in shared decision-making if they don’t have the information upon which to make the decision.
- There is disconnection between what the research found to be important to service users and carers (engagement and delivery of the care plan) and what the professional found to be important (production of care plan, targets met). Noted that there are professional and organisational drivers, but to provide care support and treatment that is going to make a difference, we have to prioritise the person’s goals.
- Aspirational goals are the future – we can ditch SMART (hurrah, permission granted!). People’s goals are not always SMART and they don’t have to be. They need to be heard, understood and drive the care plan.
- Care plans are an output of working together with people to agree a plan but the journey to get to this point is where the value lies – involving the person, understanding priorities and being prepared to hear them even if they are in conflict to professional/organisational priorities, being flexible and responding to changing needs. It’s the process not the product.
- The role that an organisation takes in setting local ‘targets’ can work against improving quality of involvement and inhibit shared decision
- The trainers mentioned that they found the Trusts care plan to be the most service user focused amongst the Trusts they have worked with; that they found working with LYPFT to be a positive experience, that the staff have been positive, motivated and caring. Lindsey said that it gave her hope that care coordinators can and do support people very well in the community.
Delighted to have had the opportunity to participate, looking forward to thinking about what this learning means for LYPFT, community teams and most importantly for the difference this makes to people and carers.
Donna Kemp | Care Programme Approach Development Manager
Earlier this year, a chance on-line conversation led to Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust becoming involved in the EQUIP study: Enhancing the quality of user involved care planning in mental health services. This presents an opportunity for people who use the service and their carers, and for care coordinators to be involved in a national research study – you can read more about our involvement with the EQUIP study here. Ultimately this is about increasing people’s involvement in planning their care, an idea that has been around for a lot of years but that remains a challenge to mental health services in delivering consistently. The good people at EQUIP have published a paper that brings together the current evidence base and identifies barriers and enablers to bringing this level of involvement to practice. It reads well and is available on open access here.
The theme of involvement continues as being ‘involved’ in a national research project brings its own challenges. Theoretically, it is the right thing to do: contributing to the body of evidence; potentially improving people’s experience of mental health services; improving outcomes through collaborative working; challenging stigma and power; developing care coordinator skills…… the benefits go on. Then there is the reality of practice – research activity not always making it to the top of the list of ‘things to do’; perhaps being seen as extra to practice and not part of practice; competing with service user visits/contact. That said, care coordinators have responded positively to the clinical studies officers requests; despite being super busy with clinical work, they screened their caseload in super quick time (hats off and a big thank you to them!). This bodes well for the next hurdle – releasing a community team for 2 days of training. Looking forward to experiencing the training and seeing how this can influence practice – and ultimately how people can be actively involved in planning their care. This is where the big win lies in being involved in the EQUIP study.
Oh – and do have chance conversations with people, you never know where it will lead……..
Are you involved in planning your care? Does it make a difference?
Care coordinators – what are the main issues with involving people in planning their care?
We are setting up the group to improve crisis plans so that service users will be able to say “I am supported to develop a plan for how I wish to be treated if I experience a crisis in the future and there is an agreed strategy for how this will be carried out.”
We talked about this at the York Service User Network on the 25th June and agreed that we needed another meeting so that people could give their views.
I would like to invite you to a meeting on the morning of Thursday 16th July 2015 in York, if you would like to come along, then please contact email@example.com for further details.
If you can’t come to the meeting or prefer to offer your views by email, then please see below; you can leave your responses as comments on the blog or email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Co-production of Crisis Plans Group
Questions for service users
Please help us understand how to involve you to improve the way that we work with people to co-produce crisis plans.
This work should be Coproduced and Accessible. Please can you help us by answering the questions below?
- How can we improve or change how we describe what Co-production means?
- Who should attend the group?
- How should decisions be made in the group?
- What else can we do to make the work of the group a Coproduction?
- How can we improve or change how we describe what “accessible” means?
- How can we make sure the group is accessible?
- Are there any rules or standards we should agree to make the group accessible?
- Do you have any other comments?
Leeds and York Partnership Foundation Trust (LYPFT) Involvement Opportunity:
Co-production of Crisis Plans
We are looking for people to be part of a group focusing on improving the quality of crisis plans.
Click for full flyer
The aim of the group is:
- To agree what ‘co-production’ means
- To agree what ‘accessible’ means
- Understand what the current crisis plans are like
- To agree what ‘good’ looks like
- Develop a plan for improvement
Expressions of interest to be part of the group are invited from:
- People who are currently accessing LYPFT mental health or learning disability services and carers
- People who have accessed LYPFT mental health or learning disability services in the last 2 years and carers
The group will be jointly led by service users and will meet monthly to start with. The group will decide its terms of reference.
If you are interested and want to find out more, please come along to:
York Service User Network Event
Thursday 25th June 2015
The Library, Friends Meeting House, Friargate, York YO1 9RL
If you want to be involved but can’t make it to the meeting, contact:
Jeff Whiley, Locality Manager firstname.lastname@example.org 07852538247 or 01904294687
or Donna Kemp CPA Development Manager email@example.com 07985 259082