Archive for the ‘meeting notes’ Category

Lesley brought us up to speed on future together trips including Blackpool Lights on 25th Oct 11am from URC £8 each. Also Oasis Groups Xmas party Mon 10th Dec 2012 full xmas dinner with music, karaoke and free raffle!!!

Discussion about Heath Park Lodge shutting and where that leaves together not just for offices, but for funds also.

Discussions and updates from various groups:

  • Mind have a Holiday to South Wales next month and news of next years Butterfly ball.

  • The Hearing Voices Group now meets in the community room in Central library 3pm til 5pm on Fridays – contact Clinton Cropper or Stuart Kenyon

  • No Secrets St Helens meet on Wednesdays.

  • Dual Diagnosis still meet 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of month at Newton Library 1pm til 3pm and the other Fridays at Millennium centre St Helens 2pm til 3pm – contact Chad Fairhurst or Christine Ollerton

  • Various Wellbeing projects – contact Mark and Lynn Swift

  • Photographic Minds Saturday mornings at Millennium centre – contact David Hemming or Alan Sherratt

Heath Park Lodge: The Council is working with all organisations based in the building as they make alternative arrangements.

Stewart Assessment Centre: the teams are getting ready to move into their temporary bases.


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Heath Park Lodge:

The meeting was alarmed to hear that Heath Park Lodge would be closing. The Hearing Voices group had been told they cannot meet there any longer and the organisations who are based there have been told they need to find alternative accommodation from next year (April 2013).

We have heard no public consultation about this change. We have asked the Council for more information. 

Stewart Assessment Centre:

This building is changing and will become the base for all the teams as well as an Outpatient area for depot clinics and other appointments. We have been invited to the meetings at an early stage. We looked at the current plans for the building. Comments included:

  • What will happen to Vista Road and Lord St?

  • What will happen to the building at the front of the Peasley Cross site?

  • There was a lot of enthusiasm for the cafe area to include an outside area, and it being service user run.

  • We hope that they will learn from Knowsley House – people do not like the reception area there because of the atmosphere. They described that they want all areas to be welcoming and warm, with a choice of magazines; as opposed to NHS, with blue logos and posters stuck everywhere.

  • We want the rooms to be multi-purpose and flexible, with as many rooms as possible available for potential service user use.

We do want to be involved in decisions over colour schemes and names. We are pleased to have been consulted and shown the plans.

Benefits news: One person mentioned the long backlog of appeals locally. This is a national problem. It leaves people feeling like they are waiting and can’t move on either way.

Volunteers: Some people have volunteered to help out with our Recovery event – if you’d like to help out too, please get in touch.

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This meeting was a joint meeting with St Helens LINks to provide another opportunity for people to find out about and feed into the Acute Care Pathway (ACP) at 5 Boroughs. Karen is the Forum and Carers representative at the ACP steering group and Emma is the LINks representative (she couldn’t attend today’s meeting, so Roman attended in her place).

Several people had sent apologies specifically because of this joint meeting. We have therefore agreed that future joint meetings will be on separate days to our regular Forum. The joint meetings are open to all and we encourage people to attend to make their views known.

We had a long and productive discussion. Key points included:

  • the Trust is still working closely with Open Mind

  • there should now be no ‘wrong referrals’

  • if someone leaves the service, they should be able to get back in promptly if necessary

  • Vista Road will still be there

  • dual diagnosis – they welcome evidence about services that are working well elsewhere

  • the recovery teams will start in December

  • service users and carers will be involved in developing the recovery teams

Lesley described that she has found the new assessment and home treatment teams are working well and have a very positive and pro-active approach.

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Emma had attended the meeting of the Acute Care Pathway steering group on 12th June. She gave feedback about the meeting, and provided copies of the minutes.

We gave her a case study about how the model is causing anxiety for one person who is likely to get reduced support. She will type this up and give to 5 Boroughs as a demonstration about how people might be affected by their changes. Another Forum member described how he is waiting on a referral for support through Open Mind.

Everyone was very concerned that access to additional services may be dependent on being supported by a psychiatrist. That includes services such as those provided by together as well as benefits. So that when people are discharged from secondary mental health services, they may lose a lot of support all at the same time.

Some people mentioned that GPs are charging for a letter to support people’s assessments for benefits. If this happens to you, please let us, or Emma, know.

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People are still very worried about changes to benefits including being called in for Work Capability Assessments. It is always best to take someone with you to the assessment. People also described how long the appeal process takes and the difficulties that can cause.

People are still worried about the future of the building at Vista Road, with questions about what the Trust will do with the building. Despite 5 Boroughs saying that Vista Road will stay open, people are worried that might change in future.

A member of the LINks attended the group. He agreed to take some of the concerns about Vista Road to the next LINk meeting.

Lesley now has a form that she can take to people she supports so that they can give her permission to bring their comments and issues to the Forum on their behalf. Thank you to people who have completed these – they have been passed anonymously to the LINk.

We talked about Peer Support Workers and the ImROC (recovery) project. We agreed that it really does help to talk to someone who has been through a similar experience.

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We’ve agreed to combine the two mailouts for the Forum and Carers group to form one newsletter. This will help us to make sure everyone gets the information. It also makes best use of our resources so that we don’t duplicate mailouts and reduce postal costs where possible.

For this month, we have put all the material for the two groups into this mailout. We would like to include contributions from you – so if you have any writing or artwork you would like us to publish, please either email it to Karen, or drop it in at the Oasis group on a Monday morning.

If you want to help out, by writing pieces or stuffing envelopes – please get in touch – the more people involved the easier it is for us all.

 You can help us to save money:

  • If you would prefer to receive information by email please, do let us know your up to date email address. (Email me at k.machin@sthelensmhforum.org )

  • If more than one person in your house now receives this, and you would be happy to share a copy – please let me know.

  • If you move address, don’t forget to tell us.

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Attended by 5 people

And Lesley from together

We had some apologies because of a clash of dates with a new project – our Forum has always been on the third Tuesday of each month and we agreed to keep to this.

People are still worried about the future of the building at Vista Road, with questions about what the Trust will do with the building. Do attend updates from 5 Boroughs (see diary list).

St Helens Health Forum – Sam is attending this meeting on our behalf. It is in place of the Partnership Boards (LIT) and is an opportunity to feed into decisions.

Benefits – a top tip for anyone called in for a Work Capability Assessment is to take someone with them – do not go alone. Lesley described how she had been in with people she supports.

Shopping – we had a long discussion about the difficulties of shopping for food, especially when you don’t feel up to going out, or if you find it hard to carry shopping. Some people use online shopping to get deliveries of food.

Iceland on Ormskirk Street do home deliveries of food if you buy over £25 in their shop (you have to go to the shop to select it, but they will deliver it for you – which saves you having to carry it). You need to register with them for a Bonus Card to use the free service. Ask at the shop for more details.

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