"Wigan Mental Health Crisis Team - no response"

About: Claire House

(as the patient),

I'm under the care of Wigan IAPT and have been for just under 12 months. In my initial phase of appointments I raised concerns about how low my mood was and the psychologist I was seeing (with my consent) contacted the Crisis Team on my behalf and said someone would ring me to talk to me. Nobody ever rang. This was in July last year. The psychologist I was seeing had no idea why they hadn't got in touch.

I moved onto the next stage of therapy a few months later, but have continued to experience periods of sustained low mood which I am very frightened about. Again, I was told to contact the Crisis Team, but have tried to ring and nobody has picked up.

Last week, I felt very low indeed and unable to pick up the phone, but tried instead to use the supplied email address to contact the team in Wigan - 6 days later I have had no response and not even an acknowledgement of my message.

I don't know what to do or who to talk to, I've been told to visit my GP and they can try and contact the team on my behalf, but given that there have already been 4 attempts and one of them by a psychologist - without success - I just don't know what the point is.

I'm aware these services are under pressure and there is a great demand on them, but I already feel like a burden and a nuisance. Having my message ignored makes me scared to get in touch again, but at the same time I continue to feel very low and unable to cope. I can't recommend this service and worry that other people will experience the same and give up. The other services I have accessed, including IAPT have been great - and I can't commend the staff highly enough for their time and care. But the Crisis Team seems to be difficult.

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Response from Katherine Earlam, PALS Officer, 5 Boroughs Partnership NHS Trust

I am very sorry to hear about the difficulties you have been experiencing in trying to get additional support. Our Mental Health Assessment Team based at Claire House, would be the first point of contact, they are a 24 hour service and can be reached upon 01942 482239. If this is the contact number that you have tried and have received no response from, I would very much like to be able to speak to you in order to pursue this matter with the team and ensure that you supported, and that this does not happen again in the future. I can be contacted on 01942 264622.

However, I am very pleased that you have received good support from the IAPT team, and if you would like your therapist to contact me on your behalf, and with your consent, I would be more than happy to speak with them also, to determine the difficulties they too have experienced

Jeanette Mather

Matron for Quality (Living Life Well Services)

Telephone 01942 264622’

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