"Mental Health Crisis - Access to psychological support"

About: Mersey Care NHS Trust

(as other),

The friend of a parent trying to access mental health support for his 23 year old son has contacted Liverpool Mental Health Consortium to report his concerns about the Talk Liverpool IAPT service - part of Mersey Care NHS Trust. He said that when Mersey Care/Talk Liverpool won the tender to deliver Liverpool's talking therapy/IAPT services (from April 2016) one of the 'selling points' of the new service was that it would accept self-referrals. The previous service (Inclusion Matters) had generally required a GP referral. However, in this case, the father and his son had tried more than once to refer the son - who was experiencing suicidal ideation - to Talk Liverpool but had been unable to make an appointment. Instead, they were referred to a local A&E service (not run by Mersey Care).

Both father and son were desperate by this stage but did not want to go to an A&E Department as the son felt he was in need of psychological support. They felt let down by Mersey Care/Talk Liverpool and felt that the service had been mis-sold in terms of access/self-referral. Waiting for several weeks/months for support was not an option and the family friend who contacted us was trying to help them by seeking alternative talking therapy/counselling services which could be accessed more or less instantly - even if this required paying a fee. We were able to provide a couple of potential options for them.

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Response from Kim Guy, PALS Manager, Mersey Care NHS Trust

Thank you for taking the time to comment on your experience of Talk Liverpool, as you highlighted Talk Liverpool does now accept self referrals, this can be done via our website or by contacting us on 0151 228 2300.

Talk Liverpool provides a range of group and individual therapies for people experiencing mild to moderate depression or anxiety. Usually an assessment appointment will be arranged in order to discuss which therapy is going to be the most appropriate.

Occassionally where it is considered that TALK Liverpool is unable to provide the service required we will signpost to an appropriate seervice.

Please contact TALK Liverpool or Mersey care PALS if you wish to discuss further or have any concerns in the future.


Kim Guy PALS/Patient Experience

Tracey Murden Operational Lead TALK Liverpool

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