Mental health pledge triggers new services at ambulance trust

Date: 25 August 2017

The region’s ambulance service is continuing its bid to rid the stigma of mental health.

East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust’s Chief Executive Robert Morton and Chair Sarah Boulton signed mental health charity Mind’s Blue Light Time to Change Pledge in May 2016.

A year on and the Trust is not just focusing on mental health but investing in the overall wellbeing of its staff.

By signing the pledge, the Trust needed to demonstrate it had produced an action plan, detailing what will be delivered to commit to supporting the mental health of staff.

From a full strategy incorporating the principles of the Pledge, to the launch of a wellbeing hub, the Trust has many different support systems now in place and the list of services is continually growing.

The service now covers different aspects of mental health including training, counselling and e-therapy on subjects such as personal resilience, stress and anxiety, suicide prevention, mental health and first aid.

The Trust’s Health and Wellbeing Manager Debra Winterson, said: “The signing of the Pledge really was the trigger. It formed part of our commitment to developing a holistic, including physical, social and psychological, wellbeing service for our staff.

“We often work together with the police and fire services to share ideas and support each other, which in turn strengthens all of our services.

“We have moved on a long way since and are proud of our growing no stigma approach to any element of our staff’s health.”

The Mind Blue Light Time to Change Pledge encourages organisations to publicly commit to a series of actions to tackle the stigma and discrimination around mental health.

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