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Engagement on Older People's Mental Health Services

Tell us your experiences of support and services for older people with mental health needs in Swansea Bay.

An engagement document on our proposals to create a single integrated service across Swansea Bay for older people with mental health needs; and our proposals to reduce & change use of beds.

Public Engagement – From 5th July to 12th September 2021

 

What is this engagement about and who should read it?

We want to hear about your experiences of how we support older people with Mental Health problems across the Swansea Bay area; how well we enable people to stay in their own home or care home for as long as possible, living their best life possible; and how well we support you to reduce your risk of developing poor mental health as you get older. 

The Health Board, Local Authorities and voluntary sector are developing a longer term plan to improve how we do all of this and we want to take into account your experiences and views in developing this plan.

We want to hear your views about the changes we are proposing to our specialist inpatient beds which provide assessment and longer-term care for the small number of older people with the highest levels of need who cannot be cared for safely anywhere else. 

These proposals will also allow us to increase the number of orthopaedic (joint) operations where we have seen a continued rise in our waiting lists with high numbers of patients waiting over one year for major orthopaedic operations.

Over recent years we have invested significant additional resources into our community mental health services, which has contributed to less of our specialist inpatient beds being used. We had been reviewing the number of mental health beds for older people we need due to the low number of beds being used, and staffing challenges associated with supporting the number of beds we had prior to COVID. Therefore, late in 2019 we temporarily closed 14 beds (Suite 4) at Tonna Hospital because of acute staffing problems and started a public engagement on closing these beds permanently in March 2020.  Because of the pandemic we paused this engagement. 

We have now reviewed these proposals in the light of changes made to services so that the health service could cope with Covid-19 demands and the need to increase the number of orthopaedic operations we can carry out. As a result, we have withdrawn our original proposals (March 2020 engagement) and developed an alternative set of proposals which are outlined in this document.

The outcome of the engagement and all the responses received will be considered by the Health Board and Community Health Council in October 2021. Based on this, decisions will be made about whether the proposed closure of beds can be implemented or whether further public consultation is required.  

Overall we believe this shows us that we have too much money and staff resources tied up in hospital beds and we need to move more staff to support patients in community settings and in their own homes, including providing more support to their families and carers.

Whilst this document outlines proposed changes to our services by closing 37 beds, we also want to know about your experiences of the support and services available for older people with mental health problems in the Swansea Bay area so that we can make sure we take account of these when developing our Strategic Framework for Older People’s Mental Health Services.

We want to know what your experiences have been – good and bad, and what you think we should do differently in providing support and services for older people with mental health problems in the future and their carers and families, particularly how we can support you to stay in your own home.

Public engagement on the reduction of 37 older peoples’ mental health beds is from 5th July to 12th September 2021.

The full Older People's Mental Health Services engagement document can be accessed via this link.

The Older People's Mental Health Services Equality Impact Assessment Stage 1 document can be accessed via this link. 

It is also available in Welsh, large print (English and Welsh), audiobook (English and Welsh), British Sign Language video, Easy Read and Braille.  You can request these by ringing 01639 683355 or by emailing SBU.engagement@wales.nhs.uk.

Below you will find details of the different ways you can contact us and get involved in this engagement.  

You can let us know what you think by:

Filling in the response form linked here and returning it to us via the address or email address located below. 

Writing to us:

Chief Executive, Swansea Bay UHB, One Talbot Gateway, Baglan, SA12 7BR

Emailing us: SBU.engagement@wales.nhs.uk

Phoning us and leaving a message: (01639) 683355

Link to our Facebook page here

Link to our Twitter account here

Alternatively, you can let the Community Health Council know your views by writing to them at:

Swansea Bay Community Health Council, Cimla Hospital, Cimla, Neath, SA11 3SU

Or emailing them: swanseabay@waleschc.org.uk

Thank you for reading this and giving us your views.

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