Lincolnshire is piloting a new approach to mental health emergencies, bringing mental health nurses, police and paramedics together to provide the best possible care for vulnerable people.
The pilot, launched in June and jointly funded by the NHS and Lincolnshire Police, has mental health nurses and paramedics attending incidents where police officers believe people need immediate mental health support.
The dedicated car and team of healthcare professionals are operating throughout the county to ensure people with mental health issues are kept out of police custody and receive the right treatment and care. The pilot service is activated by 999 emergency calls received by the ambulance service central call centre seven days’ a week.
EMAS locality quality manager, Paul Benton, said: “The pilot fits with our Better Patient Care improvement plan which is focused on ensuring we work with the community and our partners to provide appropriate care, particularly to those individuals who are suffering from mental health issues as well as physical injuries and are clearly in need of some immediate help.”
The ‘street triage’ service - the only one of its kind operating in the East Midlands which sees mental health nurses and paramedics attending incidents together where it’s believed people need immediate mental health support – is already having an impact by reducing unnecessary demand on A&E resources.
Lincolnshire Police chief inspector, Chris Davison, added: “We’re very excited by this pilot, as it promises to deliver better outcomes for people needing services, as well as reducing the demand on police officer time in dealing with mental health related incidents.”