Mental Health Trust urges people to use its services in wake of new variant

Help each other stay healthy

Specialist mental health staff at Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust (LSCft) are encouraging people across Lancashire and South Cumbria to access its range of mental health services, as many face an uncertain Christmas.

With news of the spread of the Omicron variant and the ongoing effects of the pandemic, LSCft has seen a rise in demand for its mental health services over the last 12 months.

For most, the Christmas period is an opportunity to spend time with family and friends, but some may be facing a change of plan due to COVID-19 symptoms, having to isolate or wanting to further protect themselves against the virus by limiting social contact. These last minute changes can put pressures on an individual’s mental health, leaving them feeling overwhelmed and stressed.

Chief Executive at LSCft, Caroline Donovan said: “I know this last week has been especially challenging for our staff and service users, as we start to see an increase in community transmission of the Omicron variant. While we continue to encourage everyone to get the booster to protect themselves and look after their physical health, it is equally important that we look after our mental health as well.

“The strain of the pandemic alongside a time of year that is normally spent celebrating, means some of our local communities may begin to struggle. For those people, we have teams of highly skilled mental health staff within our services that are here to help.”

As Christmas comes after a challenging two years for us all, those who are vulnerable or experiencing difficult circumstances may be anticipating a lonely or isolating Christmas and New Year. Whether you are experiencing low mood, feeling lost or going through grief, the Trust is encouraging people to ‘keep talking to one another’ and use its range of services that offer urgent to low-level mental health support.

Andy Curran, Medical Director for Lancashire and South Cumbria Health and Care Partnership said: “It is important now more than ever to keep communicating about our mental health. We understand that the continued effects of the pandemic over the last two years will add additional pressures onto our communities.

“The important message here is that we are here for you, and with a multitude of services across the region, the Trust is ready to continue to help support those experiencing mental health concerns.”

These services include its 24-hour mental health Crisis Line, Mindsmatter talking therapy services and access to local crisis teams, all of which are managed by mental health professionals.

For a full list of urgent to low-level LSCft mental health services, please see below:

Mental Health Crisis Line

Our 24-hour Crisis Line is available for you to call if you need to speak to someone urgently about your mental health. We can support you in the moment as well as signpost and refer to further services.

☎️ 0800 953 0110

For more information visit the LSCft website: https://www.lscft.nhs.uk/crisis

Local Crisis Teams

For people of all ages, we have a list of direct telephone numbers to crisis teams across all areas of Lancashire and South Cumbria. This includes contacts and out of hours telephone numbers.

For more information visit: https://www.lscft.nhs.uk/local-crisis-teams

Mindsmatter

Did you know anyone in Lancashire and South Cumbria can self-refer to talking therapies? You don’t need to make a GP appointment. Just fill in the online form.

Find out more about talking therapies, what it can help with and self-refer on our website: https://www.lscft.nhs.uk/Mindsmatter

Follow on Twitter at: @MindsmatterNHS

For more information about mental health, please visit https://www.healthierlsc.co.uk/mentalhealth