"lack of thought in the care of sufferers of depression"

About: Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust / Adult mental health (inpatient)

(as a service user),

I suffer from severe chronic depression and anxiety. Life is a daily struggle but I have been fortunate to access creative sessions run by the social inclusion and wellbeing service of Nottinghamshire healthcare trust for a number of years. These sessions are my lifeline. As well as giving me a brief respite from my symptoms, they provide valuable social contact, peer support, a regular and achievable goal and the only positive aspect in my life.

On Friday, I was informed I was to be discharged from the service. No reason was given. I assume it was either a cost cutting exercise or to massage the "success" rate of the service. I was offered the token panacea of "support" and "signposting" to other activities but, which from experience, I know do not cater as well for those of us with mental health problems. I was devastated at the news. I had been presented with a ‘fait a complis’ without anyone discussing the state of my health beforehand. In fact, I was already very low, struggling to leave the house, and seeing my psychiatrist every four weeks, facts I pointed out to the poor soul who had been tasked with passing on the judgement from above.

On Monday, I received a phone call saying not to worry, the social inclusion and wellbeing service hadn't realised I was still seeing my psychiatrist so I wouldn’t be discharged after all. So that's alright then.

No it isn't.

You see, I was absolutely devastated to have my lifeline withdrawn.

I spent that weekend planning how I was going to end my life. The one thing I had that made life worth living had been taken away. Not only that, I felt that my reaction to that loss was stupid and pathetic. I used to be a normal, competent person, now I'm an idiot who can't find another art group to go to.

The week before, my care coordinator was supposed to meet me at the psychiatrist appointment. He never showed up and hasn't been in touch since. The siwb service couldn't be bothered to get in touch to see what state I was in, before making decisions about my future.

In the space of a week the (in)actions of so-called professionals have made me feel worthless and knocked me down in to the pit of despair.

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Response from Tim Wood, Manager, NOTTINGHAM FOCUS ON WELLBEING

picture of Tim Wood

Dear Fubar

At the moment the manager of the Social Inclusion and Well-being service is on holiday, I would hope however she will reply when she returns from her holiday.

As a member of the Social Inclusion and Well-being service I am sorry that you have been left feeling this way, and that your experience of our service hasn't been a good one of late. Hopefully this is something we will be able to rectify. In the interim I will make sure that the senior OT's (who deputise in the absence of the manager) are aware of your concerns.

Best wishes Tim

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Response from Jane Danforth, Involvement Team , Involvement & Experience, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

picture of Jane Danforth

Dear Fubar

After reading your account of the mistaken withdrawal of your service We would like to offer you the opportunity to discuss your feedback.

As the manager is on leave until August 13th it would be good to talk to you as soon as possible to think about how we can learn from this.

The issue around communication is really important and we value any suggestions you might have for improving this.

I would like to say how sorry we are that you have been so distressed by the thought of losing your service.

Rachel Strange can be contacted on Nottingham 9560802

Kind Regards

Jane Danforth

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Response from Julie Swann, Team Leader, Social Inclusion and Well-being Service, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

Dear Fubar,

I have returned from leave today and read your account of the mistaken withdrawal of your service.

I am sorry to hear that you have been left feeling this way

Communicationn is really important, if you would like to meet with me to discuss your concerns please contact me on 0115 0560802

Kind Regards

Julie Swann

Team Leader Social Inclusion and Well Being Team

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